Legislation to level the playing field between Oklahoma brick-and-mortar retailers and out-of-state vendors was signed by the governor Tuesday.

 

House Bill 2531, by state Rep. Chad Caldwell, the Retail Protection Act, will require online retailers that do not have a physical presence in Oklahoma to either begin voluntarily collecting sales tax at the point of consumer purchase or sending each of their consumers a notice at the end of each year stating the total amount of purchases with a reminder that sales and use tax remittance is required.

 

“The governor’s signature helps protect Oklahoma businesses by lessening the benefit online retailers receive by not collecting Oklahoma Sales tax,” said Caldwell, R-Enid. “This also means millions of dollars for vital state services such as education and health care.”

 

Caldwell stressed this is not a tax increase as sales and use tax collection and remittance is already required by state statute. Under the current system, the taxpayer was required to claim the use tax annually on their tax return. Estimates show only 4 percent of Oklahoma taxpayers complied.

 

The law takes effect Nov. 1.