06-01-2020  8:19 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Governor Brown Announces $30 Million Investment to Protect Agricultural Workers

The funds are intended to secure Oregon's food supply chain and support agricultural workers during the COVID-19 health crisis

Rally Against Racist Violence Planned for Tuesday in Olympia

A rally will be held at 4pm Tuesday in Olympia to demand justice and call on elected officials to pass policies that tackle systemic racist violence

Portland Under Curfew Tonight in Response to Protests Turned Violent

Today Mayor Ted Wheeler issued an executive order declaring an emergency and implementing a temporary nighttime curfew in the City of Portland taking effect at 8 p.m.

Fiery Protests in Portland following George Floyd Rally

Rallies to protest the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody turned violent in Portland, Oregon, with fires lit downtown and at least one shot fired

NEWS BRIEFS

Oregon Health Authority Investigating COVID-19 Increase at Unnamed Business

Oregon reports 71 new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases today, no new deaths ...

Some Columbia River Gorge Trails, Parks Reopen Today

Crowded sites including most waterfall viewing areas, campgrounds, and visitor’s centers will stay closed because of the coronavirus...

Over 60 Percent of U.S. Households Have Responded to 2020 Census

Washington is one of the 6 states with the highest self-response rates and both Seattle and Portland are one of the top 8 cities with...

Federal Court Rules Florida Law That Undermined Voting Rights Restoration Is Unconstitutional

The law required people with past convictions to pay all outstanding legal fees, costs, fines, and restitution before regaining their...

More arrests in Portland as George Floyd protests continue

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Police in Portland, Oregon, arrested 12 adults during protests Sunday and early Monday morning after authorities said projectiles – including aerial mortars – were thrown at officers as demonstrations over the killing of George Floyd continued in...

The Latest: Arrest in historic Nashville courthouse fire

The Latest on the death in Minneapolis of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who pleaded for air as a white police officer pressed a knee on his neck:___NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A man who set fire to a historic courthouse in Tennessee during weekend protests has been arrested. Wesley Somers, 25,...

Kansas, Missouri renew Border War with 4-game football set

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Kansas and Missouri are resuming their bitter Border War in football after the former Big 12 rivals agreed to a four-game series in which each school will play two home games beginning in September 2025.The fourth-longest rivalry in college football dates to 1891, but...

OPINION

A Letter to George Floyd: (Posthumous)

As Black mothers, so often we say, our Black boys across this nation belong to all of us. ...

Ballot Measure 26-210 is Needed Now

Though this measure was referred to the ballot by Metro, it was written by the HereTogether coalition ...

The Skanner News May Primary 2020 Endorsements

Read The Skanner News' midterm election endorsements for Oregon, Multnomah County, Portland, and ballot measures ...

A New Earth Day

Happy Earth Day. If we actually mean it, we will elect representatives who will force the military to clean up their pollution ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Biden meets with black leaders at local church amid unrest

WILMINGTON, Del. (AP) — Joe Biden met with community leaders at a predominantly African American church in Delaware Monday morning, leaving home for a second consecutive day to address exploding racial tensions that have begun to reshape the upcoming presidential election.Biden, the former...

The Latest: Arrest in historic Nashville courthouse fire

The Latest on the death in Minneapolis of George Floyd, a handcuffed black man who pleaded for air as a white police officer pressed a knee on his neck:___NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A man who set fire to a historic courthouse in Tennessee during weekend protests has been arrested. Wesley Somers, 25,...

US heads into a new week shaken by violence and frustration

WASHINGTON (AP) — After six straight days of unrest, America headed into a new work week Monday with neighborhoods in shambles, urban streets on lockdown and political leaders struggling to control the coast-to-coast outpouring of rage over police killings of black people.Despite curfews in...

ENTERTAINMENT

Review: 'The Book of Rosy' is one woman's tale at the border

“The Book of Rosy: A Mother’s Story of Separation at the Border,” by Rosayra Pablo Cruz and Julie Schwietert Collazo (HarperOne)It’s easy to see why people in Guatemala and other Central American nations are willing to leave what little they have for a long, difficult...

Fox News reporter attacked, chased from demonstration

NEW YORK (AP) — A Fox News reporter was pummeled and chased by protesters who had gathered outside the White House early Saturday as part of nationwide unrest following the death of George Floyd.For several journalists across the country, the demonstrations were taking an ominous, dangerous...

Herbert Stempel, TV quiz show whistleblower, dies at 93

NEW YORK (AP) — Herbert Stempel, a fall guy and whistleblower of early television whose confession to deliberately losing on a 1950s quiz show helped drive a national scandal and join his name in history to winning contestant Charles Van Doren, has died age 93.Stempel's former wife, Ethel...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Lives Lost: A century of learning, bookended by pandemic

In her 80s, Phyllis Antonetz moved to a new state, quickly settling in and volunteering at a school. In her 90s,...

UN forced to cut aid to Yemen, even as virus increases need

CAIRO (AP) — Aid organizations are making an urgent plea for funding to shore up their operations in...

History, right now: Echoes of 1968, and other American years

The streets were on fire as National Guard troops streamed into American cities. The shouts were soaked in anger...

The Latest: North Macedonia reports spike in new infections

The Latest on the coronavirus pandemic. COVID-19 causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people. For some,...

India cautiously opens up even as coronavirus cases rise

NEW DELHI (AP) — More states opened up and crowds of commuters trickled onto the roads in many of India's...

Putin sets July 1 for vote to extend his rule for years

MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin on Monday set a July 1 date for a nationwide vote on...

McMenamins
Chris Isidore CNN Money

NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- Many online purchases could soon be more expensive, if a long-debated Internet sales tax law advances through Congress.

The law would allow 45 states and the District of Columbia to demand that online retailers collect sales tax on purchases. Estimates are that consumers would be spending between $12 billion to $23 billion more a year due to the increased tax collection.

Here's what you need to know about the current law on online purchase and what would happen under the legislation:

When is an Internet retailer required to collect sales tax under current law?

Essentially states can only demand that online retailers that have a physical presence in their states -- such as a store, a warehouse or a factory -- collect sales taxes on purchases by residents of that state. Technically people who buy goods online tax free are supposed to make sales tax payments on those purchases to their home state. But estimates are that only about 1% of buyers comply with those widely unenforced laws.

Who would pay sales tax under the proposed legislation?

Sellers with more than $1 million a year in sales would be responsible for collecting the tax from buyers in the 45 states plus D.C. that currently charge sales tax. Even if an online retailer provides "tax-free" purchases as a way of attracting customers, the way many now offer free shipping, it would be responsible for paying the sales taxes to the various states. That would likely raise the cost of the item charged consumers.

How much in taxes will be paid?

This is tough to say. The most widely quoted study shows that there would be $12 billion in taxes, but that study is from 2009 and online purchases have risen significantly since then. Some estimates are that tax collection could be nearly double that amount. The highest statewide sales tax is the 7.5% rate in California, but local sales taxes raise the rate to about 10% in some locations.

Who is supporting the legislation?

The National Retail Federation is one of the most active voices in support of the proposal, as it is concerned its brick-and-mortar members are losing sales to online competitors. Amazon.com, the largest online retailer, is also backing the bill. It is expanding the number of warehouses nationwide, so most Americans already pay sales tax on their Amazon purchases. So Amazon doesn't want a competitive disadvantage with other online retailers that have a smaller geographic footprint.

Who is opposing the proposal?

Many online retailers are opposed, saying it would create an administrative nightmare to comply with the law, and that higher taxes would hurt their sales.

On Sunday, eBay CEO John Donahoe sent an e-mail message to millions of users asking them to contact members of Congress. The e-mails went to eBay members who simply buy online in addition to its millions of sellers. Donahoe advocates a threshold of $10 million in annual sales or 50 employees before an online retailer would have to start collecting sales taxes.

While Republican advocates of the bill insist that the bill imposes no new taxes and only allows collection of existing ones, anti-tax activist Grover Norquist of Americans for Tax Reform wrote to senators Monday urging them to vote against the bill.

What is the status of the legislation?

The legislation has strong bipartisan support, with the lead sponsors in both houses being Republicans. But it has never been able to get out of committee for a vote on the floor of either chamber before now. Democrat Max Baucus, the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee, has kept the legislation from advancing. Baucus is from Montana, one of the five states without a sales tax.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid took the unusual step of bypassing the Finance panel for a Monday procedural vote that passed with 48 Democrats and 26 Republicans in support. The legislation could be in its final form later this week, though a vote might not come until after the coming recess.

Passage in the House is less certain. but the measure does have bipartisan support there as well. Norton Francis, senior research associate of the Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Institute, said that even members of the House Republican leadership support the plan.

 

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