When the issue of a sales-tax exemption for an online retailer’s distribution center was before the S.C. House six years ago, the tax break sailed through – passing 93-1.
Among the tax break’s supporters then were now-Gov. Nikki Haley and 31 other current House members. All 32 voted in favor of a tax break for the as-seen-on-TV retailer QVC in 2005 but now oppose granting the same exemption to Amazon.
Amazon requested the incentive – which would exempt the company from collecting sales tax on purchases by S.C. residents for five years – as part of a deal to bring 1,250 jobs to a new Cayce distribution center.
The Amazon deal was struck under Gov. Mark Sanford, who since has left office. Gov. Haley has said the exemption is bad policy and refused to support it.
Amid pressure from a coalition of major retailers, including Wal-Mart and Target, and local stores, the House voted down the Amazon exemption, 71-47, on April 27.