CT never came up with a plan to collect more online sales tax

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Connecticut, like many states, has tried to capture more tax revenue from online sales since the U.S. Supreme Court opened the door in 2018.

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But the state auditors recently noted Connecticut’s tax department never implemented a 2019 legislative directive designed to rake in an extra $30 million from internet transactions.

While some lawmakers aren’t ready to abandon it, getting to that savings could be politically tricky.

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It all hinges on whether Connecticut wants to overhaul its sales tax system.

“It’s likely there’s a lot of money being left on the table,” House Majority Leader Jason Rojas, D-East Hartford, said Friday.

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“On my street alone, not a day goes by when I don’t hear the trucks, whether it be UPS or FedEx or Amazon” delivering packages, said Sen. John Fonfara, D-Hartford. “You see the activity every day.”

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The Supreme Court recognized that activity in June 2018 when it upheld a South Dakota law that allowed it to collect taxes from out-of-state businesses that sell to South Dakota residents.

Prior to the ruling, states only could tax sellers with a physical presence — such as a store or a warehouse — within their borders.

Many states quickly responded with laws redefining which businesses must collect and remit sales tax. Connecticut requires out-of-state merchants to collect and remit sales tax if they make at least 200 transactions per year involving Connecticut residents and have at least $100,000 in gross sales to residents here.

But many businesses, particularly smaller ones, still don’t comply with these new tax rules, and Connecticut and other states struggle to enforce their laws.



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