In early 2011, South Dakota enacted the following law, which requires out-of-state retailers to notify their South Dakota customers that they owe use taxes on their purchase. Continue reading
Viewing the Laws and Ordinances tag archive
Term for Retail
In March 2011, Illinois passed a law that requires large e-commerce retailers to collect and remit state sales taxes if they generate more than $10,000 in sales a year through sales affiliates based in Illinois. The law has been suspended pending a court challenge. Continue reading
Tuesday’s elections demonstrated that limiting the ability of corporations to bankroll local ballot initiatives is a crucial step in stopping the proliferation of big-box stores.
Target and Wal-Mart poured money into two campaigns to overturn store size cap laws in communities in California and Montana. They won by very narrow margins in both cases, despite having outspent grassroots groups that supported the caps by as much as 10-to-1.
But money doesn’t always win. Lowe’s lost a bid to build in another California town.
In May, Vermont became the seventeenth state in the nation to close a loophole that major chain retailers are using to evade paying state income taxes.
The loophole allows multi-state corporations to shift income made at stores in Vermont to subsidiaries in low- or no-tax states like Delaware and Nevada. Income shifted in this manner, although earned in Vermont, is not subject to the state’s corporate income tax.
"We may look back and think this is one of the most important things we’ve done," said Bristol, Rhode Island, Town Councilor Halsey Herreshoff after the council unanimously passed a formula business ordinance in May. Bristol is a community of 23,000 people about half an hour southeast of Providence.
The ordinance bars formula businesses larger than 2,500 square feet or that take up more than 65 feet of street frontage from locating in Bristol’s historic downtown.
The city of Bennington, Vermont, has enacted a store size cap ordinance that effectively puts an end to attempts by Wal-Mart to build a giant supercenter.
"The concern has been that if a single retailer becomes too large and too powerful it destroys all competition in the marketplace. And we want to avoid that," said Bennington planning director Dan Monks.
Under a city law adopted in March, chains seeking to locate in San Francisco could be required to undergo a public hearing and meet certain conditions before being granted a permit to open.
Sponsored by Supervisor Matt Gonzalez, the ordinance passed on an 8-3 vote by the Board of Supervisors.
After three years of debate and a voter referendum that demonstrated strong opposition to sprawling shopping centers, Carbondale, Colorado, has enacted an ordinance that requires the town’s planning staff and Board of Trustees to weigh the community and fiscal impacts of a large-scale retail proposal before deciding whether to approve or deny the project. The ordinance applies to any retail development larger than 15,000 square feet in neighborhood business districts or larger than 30,000 square feet elsewhere. Continue reading
Before a standing-room-only crowd, the Tuolumne County, California, Board of Supervisors voted unanimously in January to ban retail outlets over 60,000 square feet, about half the size of the average Home Depot store.
The vote came after several months of review and more than two hours of public testimony in which residents overwhelmingly endorsed the measure. "Towns that have resisted the boxes have a vital diverse downtown business climate," one resident told the board.
After months of pressure from a vocal citizens group, the City Council in Stoughton, Wisconsin, adopted an ordinance banning stores over 110,000 square feet.
Stoughton is a community of 12,500 about 20 miles southeast of Madison. Last year, after Wal-Mart announced plans to close its 40,000-square-foot Stoughton outlet to build a 183,000-square-foot supercenter on undeveloped land, a citizens group called Uff-da Wal-Mart formed. Uff-da is a Norwegian expression of disdain.