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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2019 - 2020 Regular Session


Posted: October 23, 2019 12:29 PM
From: Senator Kristin Phillips-Hill
To: All Senate members
Subject: Annual Filing of Sales Tax Returns for Small Businesses
In the near future I plan to introduce legislation which will amend Title 72 of the Fiscal Code to allow for the annual filing of sales tax returns for small businesses with less than $1,200 in total sales tax liability.

Title 72 was last revised in 1971 by removing a provision which allowed for annual filings for small businesses. The current law now requires filing of sales tax returns to be conducted on a semiannual or quarterly basis with the Department of Revenue, regardless of the amount in total sales. This requirement places an undue administrative burden on new start-up small businesses in the Commonwealth with unnecessary paperwork for liabilities as low as $1 per quarter. In addition, this antiquated provision costs taxpayers in personnel time to administer and enforce compliance of license holders for a small return. My commonsense proposal will amend Pennsylvania’s tax law to streamline filing purposes for small businesses with less than $20,000 in annual sales that will also save the Department of Revenue in administrative personnel costs.

Thirty-one states allow for some form of annual tax filing by small business based off total annual or monthly sales tax liability. Examples of states that offer annual filings include California, Connecticut, Florida Georgia, New York, South Carolina, Texas, Washington, and West Virginia.

Small businesses are the backbone of our retail economy by providing jobs, supporting local philanthropic endeavors and revitalizing areas within our communities. Please join me in supporting emerging and current small businesses with this meaningful administrative reform.

Introduced as SB975