ABA Hails Governor Quinn for His Support of Main Street Retailers in Signing Affiliate Nexus Bill into Law

    Tarrytown, NY. March 10, 2011. Following Illinois Governor Pat Quinn's signing today of sales tax fairness legislation, the American Booksellers Association -- a not-for-profit trade group representing more than 1,500 independent bookstores nationwide -- strongly praised the governor's leadership role in helping to ensure that Main Street businesses continue as engines of innovation, growth, and job creation. The legislation, HB3569, will require remote retailers with broad networks of online affiliates to collect and remit sales tax for purchases made by Illinois residents.

    “We applaud Governor Quinn for standing up for bricks-and-mortar retailers,” said ABA CEO Oren Teicher. “This is not only a huge victory for retailers in Illinois, but for bricks-and-mortar retailers in other states where there is no sales tax equity. The enactment of this legislation means the retail marketplace in Illinois will be competitive and fair, and we believe this victory will also bolster sales tax fairness efforts in other states. This campaign was clearly won through the stalwart efforts of the Illinois Retail Merchants Association and through the grassroots efforts of a large and diverse array of retailers in the state. We especially thank our independent bookstore members in Illinois for their tremendous outreach efforts, from letter-writing campaigns to face-to-face meetings with legislators and the Governor’s staff.”

    “I can’t thank you enough, Governor Quinn, for signing HB3659,” said Becky Anderson, co-owner of Anderson’s Bookshops in Naperville, Downers Grove, and Aurora, Illinois, and ABA vice president. “I speak for all of the independent bookstores in Illinois and small businesses that collect sales tax in the state. The governor’s support of this bill will level the playing field for all of us who have bricks-and-mortar businesses in this state. The tax avoidance being practiced by out of state-retailers will no longer put small businesses in Illinois at an unfair competitive disadvantage. By signing this legislation, Governor Quinn has helped Main Street businesses like mine and thousands of others. He has helped to increase jobs in the state for tax-compliant retailers and helped to secure needed revenue for our state and communities.”

    Governor Quinn's signing of sales tax fairness legislation followed threats on the part of Amazon.com to fire its affiliates in Illinois if HB3569 became law.

    ABA’s Teicher praised Governor Quinn for his leadership on this issue. “By signing this legislation, the governor is supporting the state’s economy by protecting retailers and the countless jobs they provide to the state,” Teicher said. “Those companies that would fire their affiliates simply to maintain an inequitable competitive advantage over retailers that obey the law clearly show their true colors. A belief that laws apply only to those who are smaller or who are unwilling to resort to threats or loopholes is characteristic of the worst sort of corporate citizen. We certainly hope companies like Amazon.com rethink their decision to fire affiliates, and we remain grateful that the governor took the tough, principled stand on behalf of in-state retailers. We hope other states follow his lead.”

    Other sales tax fairness measures are currently being considered in Arkansas, Arizona, California, Indiana, Massachusetts, Minnesota, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, and Vermont.

     

    About American Booksellers Association
    Founded in 1900, the American Booksellers Association is a not-for-profit trade organization devoted to meeting the needs of its core members -- independently owned bookstores with storefront locations -- through education, information dissemination, business products and services, and advocacy. ABA exists to protect and promote the interests of independent retail book businesses, as well as to protect the First Amendment rights of every American. The association actively supports free speech, literacy, and programs that support local and independent retail shops. A board of nine booksellers, representing thousands of members, governs the Association. ABA is headquartered in Tarrytown, New York.

    American Booksellers Association
    200 White Plains Rd.
    Tarrytown, NY 10591
    Meg Smith (914) 373-6641 meg@bookweb.org

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