Bill Will Solidify Agreement Reached Between Governor Haslam, Legislative Leaders, and Amazon Officials
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – In an effort to codify the agreement reached last year between Governor Bill Haslam and officials from Amazon.com Inc., Representative Kevin Brooks (R—Cleveland) and Representative Eric Watson (R—Cleveland) pushed legislation through the House today that will help Tennessee develop and maintain 3,500 jobs in the State.
The bill, House Bill 2370, is a Haslam Administration bill and was made a top priority by House Majority Leader Gerald McCormick (R—Chattanooga). Leader McCormick asked Brooks, who also serves as Assistant Majority Leader, to usher the legislation through the General Assembly.
HB 2370 simply establishes requirements for determining whether certain business affiliates have a physical presence in this State sufficient to establish nexus for sales and use tax purposes. Nexus is a legal term referring to connection or jurisdiction within a State.
In the case of Amazon, this legislation will ensure the online retail giant will pay Tennessee sales taxes if a national online sales tax law is not passed by the federal government by 2014. Under the bill, the new Amazon fulfillment centers located across the State will meet the requirement for establishing nexus in Tennessee.
“Simply put, this is a jobs bill for Tennessee,” stated Brooks. “It ensures a partner like Amazon and similar companies will participate in our system and it keeps all businesses on a level playing field. Most importantly, it ensures 3,500 positions are going to be created and remain here in Tennessee. I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Senate to get this to the Governor’s desk as soon as possible.”
McCormick added, “Representative Brooks has done a fine job getting this important bill through the House. Representative Watson has consistently fought for Amazon jobs. Obviously, it’s a priority for Governor Haslam and our Republican Majority. I believe it is vitally important we have consistency across the State and this bill does just that.”
The legislation awaits action in the Senate. The full text can be viewed here.