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Haslam bid to require online sales tax clears 1st hurdle

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Republican Gov. Bill Haslam's efforts to require more online retailers to collect Tennessee sales taxes has cleared its first major hurdle in the Legislature.

The Chattanooga Times Free Press reports that the Haslam administration wants to adopt a tax rule that would have retailers with sales of more than $500,000 per year remit the sales tax to Tennessee revenue collectors.

Under current law, consumers are responsible for paying the state any sales taxes owned for online purchases, but few people actually do.

Some member sof the Joint Government Operations Committee on Thursday argued that the governor should have to make the change by law rather than by rule. But the panel rejected an effort to give the proposal a negative recommendation and instead advanced the proposal without any recommendation.