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10-64-1Legislative findings.

The Legislature finds that:

(1)    The inability to effectively collect the sales or use tax from remote sellers who deliver tangible personal property, products transferred electronically, or services directly into South Dakota is seriously eroding the sales tax base of this state, causing revenue losses and imminent harm to this state through the loss of critical funding for state and local services;

(2)    The harm from the loss of revenue is especially serious in South Dakota because the state has no income tax, and sales and use tax revenues are essential in funding state and local services;

(3)    Despite the fact that a use tax is owed on tangible personal property, any product transferred electronically, or services delivered for use in this state, many remote sellers actively market sales as tax free or no sales tax transactions;

(4)    The structural advantages of remote sellers, including the absence of point-of-sale tax collection, along with the general growth of online retail, make clear that further erosion of this state's sales tax base is likely in the near future;

(5)    Remote sellers who make a substantial number of deliveries into or have large gross revenues from South Dakota benefit extensively from this state's market, including the economy generally, as well as state infrastructure;

(6)    In contrast with the expanding harms caused to the state from this exemption of sales tax collection duties for remote sellers, the costs of that collection have fallen. Given modern computing and software options, it is neither unusually difficult nor burdensome for remote sellers to collect and remit sales taxes associated with sales into South Dakota;

(7)    As Justice Kennedy recently recognized in his concurrence in Direct Marketing Association v. Brohl, the Supreme Court of the United States should reconsider its doctrine that prevents states from requiring remote sellers to collect sales tax, and as the foregoing findings make clear, this argument has grown stronger, and the cause more urgent, with time;

(8)    Given the urgent need for the Supreme Court of the United States to reconsider this doctrine, it is necessary for this state to pass this law clarifying its immediate intent to require collection of sales taxes by remote sellers, and permitting the most expeditious possible review of the constitutionality of this law;

(9)    Expeditious review is necessary and appropriate because, while it may be reasonable notwithstanding this law for remote sellers to continue to refuse to collect the sales tax in light of existing federal constitutional doctrine, any such refusal causes imminent harm to this state;

(10)    At the same time, the Legislature recognizes that the enactment of this law places remote sellers in a complicated position, precisely because existing constitutional doctrine calls this law into question. Accordingly, the Legislature intends to clarify that the obligations created by this law would be appropriately stayed by the courts until the constitutionality of this law has been clearly established by a binding judgment, including, for example, a decision from the Supreme Court of the United States abrogating its existing doctrine, or a final judgment applicable to a particular taxpayer; and

(11)    It is the intent of the Legislature to apply South Dakota's sales and use tax obligations to the limit of federal and state constitutional doctrines, and to thereby clarify that South Dakota law permits the state to immediately argue in any litigation that such constitutional doctrine should be changed to permit the collection obligations of this chapter.

(12)    The Supreme Court of the United States issued its decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair, 138 S.Ct. 2080 (2018), on June 21, 2018, holding:

For these reasons, the Court concludes that the physical presence rule of Quill is unsound and incorrect. The Court's decisions in Quill Corp. v. North Dakota, 504 U.S. 298 (1992), and National Bellas Hess, Inc. v. Dept. of Revenue of Ill., 386 U.S. 753 (1967), should be, and now are, overruled.

Wayfair, 138 S.Ct. at 2099. With the Supreme Court's decision in Wayfair that the physical presence rule of Quill and Bellas Hess is "unsound and incorrect" and that Quill and Bellas Hess are "overruled," the Legislature hereby finds that the purpose of the declaratory judgment provision in 2016 Senate Bill 106, codified in § 10-64-3, has been fulfilled and completed.

Source: SL 2016, ch 70, § 8, eff. May 1, 2016; SL 2018 (SS), ch 2, § 1, eff. Sept. 12, 2018.


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