Alabama Retail Association Urges Action on E-Fairness

Retailers Want a Resolution Before the Next Holiday Shopping Season

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Small business owners from Alabama and throughout the country are in Washington, D.C., to meet with their senators and members of Congress to present their case on the need for passage of federal e-fairness legislation this year. These Main Street retailers represent the hundreds of thousands of small businesses throughout the country that are disproportionately impacted by the online loophole that allows their Internet competitors to evade collecting sales tax. This artificial pricing advantage is driving local retailers out of business, and these small businesses, for the sake of a free market, call on Congress to pass legislation this year that ends government picking winners and losers and allows states to treat all retailers the same, whether they sell on Main Street, online or both.

Congress can send a powerful message that they support small business by ending policies that pick winners and losers in the free market,” said George Wilder, chairman of the Alabama Retail Asssociation and owner of the Locker Room in Montgomery and Auburn. “The time for action is this year. We need our House delegation to join Sens. Richard Shelby and Jeff Sessions in support of an e-fairness solution.”

Last spring, the U.S. Senate overwhelmingly voted in favor of e-fairness legislation known as the Marketplace Fairness Act — one of the rare acts of bipartisanship in the current divided Congress. The vote garnered the support of 69 senators, proving overwhelming support for closing the online loophole and restoring basic free market competition.

House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte has raised concerns with the Senate-passed version of the legislation and the Alliance for Marketplace Fairness’ members stand ready to work with him on improvements. Last fall, he released a set of legislative principles to help guide his committee through the legislative process. And this spring, the committee held a hearing to hear various proposals. Since then, respected House Judiciary Committee Member Jason Chaffetz of Utah has been public on his efforts to improve the legislation in a manner that can gain the support of the U.S. House of Representatives and most importantly enhance the audit and compliance components of the legislation. The alliance is supportive of Rep. Chaffetz’s efforts.

If we want to stimulate the state economy, then we should support our state businesses — the ones that create jobs, generate growth and support local communities,” said Wilder.


Pictured from left, George Wilder, The Locker Room in Montgomery; Davis Wilder, The Locker Room in Auburn; Ricky Bromberg, Bromberg & Co. Inc. in Birmingham; Rick Brown, president of the Alabama Retail Association; Darrell Bourne, Ragland Bros. Retail Cos. Inc. in Huntsville; and Jacob Shevin, Standard Furniture in Birmingham. Not pictured, Alison Wingate, vice president of the Alabama Retail Association.

To schedule an interview with any of the fly-in participants, please e-mail Nancy King Dennis at


The Alabama Retail Association represents retailers, the largest private employer in the state of Alabama, before the Alabama Legislature and the U.S. Congress. Our 4,000 independent merchant and national company members sell food, clothing, furniture and other general merchandise at more than 6,000 locations throughout Alabama. Alabama Retail promotes what is best for the retailing industry in Alabama and has been doing so since 1943. From legislation to education, through communication and member services, Alabama Retail members benefit from the value of membership in their association. Retail works!

MEDIA CONTACT: Nancy King Dennis | 334.551.0643 | 800.239.5423 |   facebook   twitter