Amazon wants voters to decide on tax collection

July 11, 2011 - 6:59 PM

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Amazon.com is seeking a referendum to let California voters decide whether to overturn a new law that forces online retailers to collect sales taxes there.

The petition, filed Friday, comes after the requirement was included in a state budget signed in late June. It forces online retailers to collect California sales taxes by expanding the definition of having a physical presence in the state. The requirement now kicks in if Amazon has a marketing arm or affiliates in the state — individuals and companies that earn commissions by referring visitors to Amazon from their websites

Amazon had thousands of affiliates in California and cut ties with them after the law's passage.

Paul Misener, Amazon's vice president of public policy, says the referendum supports jobs and investment in California.