Amazon to Begin Collecting Sales Tax in Florida [5]

Amazon.com will be required to collect and remit sales tax in Florida beginning May 1, according to media reports this week. The requirement to collect was part of a real estate deal [7] to build  a $200 million, 1.1 million-square-foot fulfillment center in Hillsborough County, which is expected to be open by year’s end, according to the Florida Times-Union [8] (FTU).

The Florida Retail Federation estimates that the state will collect some $80 million a year in sales tax from Amazon sales, the FTU reported.

While the initial real estate deal to bring in the Amazon fulfillment center was expected to bring 1,000 permanent jobs to Hillsborough County, FTU noted that Amazon has increased those projections to about 2,500, including seasonal hires.

To secure the Amazon facility last year, Hillsborough County had waived half of the county portion of the online retailers’ property tax bill for seven years after the center is built (about $6.4 million), the Tampa Bay Times [9] reported in October 2013. In exchange, Amazon was required to create 375 jobs paying at least $47,581 per year. The article noted that the facility could allow Amazon to offer local express delivery, in the same way it does in 11 other markets.