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On to the Governor in Rhode Island

This morning, I woke to the news that as predicted the Rhode Island Senate passed the budget bill. By an overwhelming majority, the budget was approved with a vote of 34-2. If you recall, Representatives passed it with a vote of 69-5. The budget will now move to the Governor who is expected to sign.

Since it is the weekend, there may be little reaction until Monday morning. If you are an affiliate, do not let the lack of comments or action lull you into a false sense of  security. Merchants, including Amazon, have removed affiliates in Hawaii and North Carolina in the anticipation of the similar legislation. If you have not already done so prepare your sites, examine your merchants.

Consider banding together with other affiliates to retain a sales tax attorney. Have that attorney explain the law and see if there is a working solution similar to what we have in New York. Remember, included in the legislation is the ability to rebut the presumption of nexus. A very simplified explanation is that a rebuttal is accomplished if there is no solicitation but you will need a lawyer to explain the procedure. Once you have a solution, present it to your merchants. Also remember, not every merchant will hit the sales threshold and have a nexus; many smaller merchants will not be affected by this law.

I urge merchants and affiliates to work together on a solution. Make informed decisions and keep the lines of communication open.

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