News Brief: District Court Blocks Colorado’s version of the Amazon Tax

U.S. District Court Judge Robert Blackburn has issued a preliminary injunction against Colorado’s version of the Amazon Tax. The new law stemmed from bill HB 1193 sponsored by State Representative John “Jack” Pommer which Governor Bill Ritter heralded upon signing as a landmark measure.

The bill passed despite heavy opposition by Amazon and the Performance Marketing Association. Shortly after it’s passage, Amazon, the main target of the bill, quickly terminated its affiliate relationships in the state. Originally the bill started as a clone of similar anti-affiliate laws like those passed by New York but morphed into a convoluted mess as it tried to exempt affiliates from being terminated by merchants.

The law in its final state imposes uniquely burdensome and unconstitutional reporting requirements for in-state sales for out of state merchants. Requirements include retailers who don’t collect state sales tax in Colorado to send their customers an annual notice of how much tax the they owe to the state. It also requires the merchants to provide the Colorado Department of Revenue a list of customers who spend more than $500 in a year with the retailer.

Judge Blackburn granted the injunction on behalf of the Direct Marketing Association which filed suit against the legislation in June.

8 Responses to News Brief: District Court Blocks Colorado’s version of the Amazon Tax

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  3. [...] Adri·n Campos John Cannon Eitel Cantoni Bill Cantrell Ivan Capelli This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. ← Daily Crunch: Galaxy Space Edition LikeBe the first to like this post. [...]

  4. [...] is Colorado’s answer to the preliminary injunction handed down by the U.S. District Court in January 2011. Judge Robert Blackburn’s ruling put a [...]

  5. [...] The ‘Amazon Tax’ repeal bill was swiftly and overwhelmingly approved in the House (on a 58-6 bipartisan vote) and is scheduled to be voted on in the Senate this week, where it is likely to pass (albeit less overwhelmingly) since the ‘Amazon Tax’ law has been blocked in Federal court since January. [...]

  6. [...] The ‘Amazon Tax’ repeal bill was swiftly and overwhelmingly approved in the House (on a 58-6 bipartisan vote) and is scheduled to be voted on in the Senate this week, where it is likely to pass (albeit less overwhelmingly) since the ‘Amazon Tax’ law has been blocked in Federal court since January. [...]

  7. [...] (in Federal Court – in order to avoid the judicial hellhole of Colorado jurisprudence) and prevented from enforcement by court injunction, anyway.  Given that the tax isn’t being collected anyway, and continuing to defend the tax [...]

  8. Clear The Bench Colorado’s Director Matt Arnold testified before both the state House and Senate committees that the Amazon Tax was a violation of both the Colorado Constitution (Article X, Section 20 – TABOR) and the US Constitution before the law was passed back in 2010.
    http://www.clearthebenchcolorado.org/2010/07/01/as-predicted-amazon-tax-exploiting-colorado-supreme-court-ruling-enabling-unconstitutional-dirty-dozen-tax-increases-challenged-in-federal-court/

    Instead of heeding the warning, the Democrat-controlled legislature passed what was clearly an unconstitutional law (depending, no doubt, on a then reliably anti-constitutional Colorado Supreme Court to uphold the law) which not only failed to collect any tax revenue, but wound up costing the state tens if not hundreds of thousands of taxpayer dollars to defend the indefensible in federal court when the law was (predictably) challenged.

    Perhaps if instead of coming up with creative ways to dig deeper into the pockets of Colorado’s taxpayers the legislature would have focused on ways to actually cut spending (a problem of approach shared by a wide variety of government and quasi-government institutions) our state would be in better financial condition – government and people alike.

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