Village of Lindenhurst Deputy Mayor Maryann Weckerle and Trustee Joan Masterson along with local business leaders, small business owners, and Chamber of Commerce members from various towns and villages attended Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone and Nassau County Executive Laura Curran’s press conference at Bak & Vogel paint store located on North Wellwood Avenue to urge the New York State Senate to adopt the Internet Fairness and Conformity Act in the 2018 -19 State Budget.
In its current state, only online sellers that are located in New York State are required to collect sales tax from New York State residents. This essentially provides a tax free marketplace for online retailers such as Amazon and eBay. Because of this, online retailers can sell their products at a much cheaper and competitive rate than local businesses can. Deputy Mayor Maryann Weckerle stated during the press conference that is makes it difficult for local merchants, like her family owned and operated Bak & Vogel paint store, to compete with online retailers and because of that, many consumers lean towards online purchases. The Internet Fairness and Conformity Act would require most online retailers to follow the same sales tax collection laws as brick-and-mortar stores, such as Bak & Vogel, do.