The US Supreme Court ruled this week that online retailers can now be forced by states to collect sales taxes.
 
The 5 to 4 majority decision handed down by the US Supreme Court this week has local retailers smiling.

The court overturned a 1992 ruling which barred states from requiring businesses to collect sales tax if there was no substantial connection to the state.
 
"Something that will be good for taxpayers ultimately, especially property taxpayers," said Andy Wilke, General Manager of River Hills Mall.  "River Hills Mall is the number one taxpayer in our community and we think this is a good step forward towards making a more equitable tax burden across all shoppers."
 
"Leveling the Playing field" is a common phrase being used to describe the Supreme Court's ruling. The decision gives brick–and–mortar stores some relief as online retailers will now have to charge more to include the required sales tax, which allows local brick–and–mortars to be more competitive.
 
 
"It's important that we have a marketplace that everyone is treated equally," said Patrick Baker of Greater Mankato Growth. "Whether you're an online retailer or a brick–and–mortar retailer, you should have the same legal standards apply for you with respect to taxation, and that's really what this decision is about."
 
Greater Mankato Growth also says that the ruling won't necessarily affect how future area retail is planned out, but it will allow for more options to be considered due to the economic benefit.
 
"What is certainly does is ensure that in an economy that's moving pretty heavily towards e–commerce," said Baker. "Our retailers at least have a fighting chance to compete on a level playing field with all other sellers."
 
Minnesota has yet to set a timeline for their tax collection model, but the lawsuit's origin state of South Dakota will begin within 90 days and other states are expected to follow soon after.


----KEYC News 12