Amazon sent a “Notice of Contract Termination” to all Illinois affiliates today in response to a new law in Illinois. The law, sponsored by Rep. Patrick Verschoore (D-Rock Island) and Senate President John Cullerton (D-Chicago), requires online retailers with affiliates in Illinois to collect sales tax and submit it to the llinois Department of Revenue (IDOR).
The email reads, “Unfortunately, a new state tax law signed by Governor Quinn compels us to terminate this program for Illinois-based participants. It specifically imposes the collection of taxes from consumers on sales by online retailers – including but not limited to those referred by Illinois-based affiliates like you – even if those retailers have no physical presence in the state.”
Govern Quinn says the goal of the bill is to level the playing field and make things “fair” for brick and mortar main street companies that currently collect sales tax. The fact is Illinois is beyond broke and the state needs revenue. Instead of getting rid of redundant programs and wasteful spending, they looked to the Internet. The Governor also believes this will help create jobs. Guess he thinks consumers are going to shop more on main street and less online because of this legislation. Poor fella.
Amazon is fighting this new law calling it, “unconstitutional and counterproductive.”
Even though the damage this does won’t officially be reflected in unemployment figures, Governor Pat Quinn has caused people in his own state to lose jobs–at least temporarily, entrepreneurs always bounce back. Unlike the millions of Americans on unemployment, that won’t be an option for affiliates who made a FT living with Amazon (not that entrepreneurs would collect). Unlike union members protesting in Wisconsin for more more more, online entrepreneurs have no collective rights–and quite clearly no one looking out for their interests. —Maybe that needs to change.
In the meantime, if this creates a significant decrease in your income, contact a good attorney and tax account to come up with solutions, because there are solutions! Best Buy, Walmart and many other stores have also said they’ll welcome Amazon’s booted affiliates.