The South Dakota Legislature officially convened on Tuesday with Governor Dennis Daugaard’s State of the State address.

Daugaard began with a brief update on the sagging numbers which will affect what is available to spend during the session.

“Since we met in December, revenue has not strengthened. Sales tax continues to run below even revised projections. Overall revenue is down another $5.8 million. We will need to continue to watch revenues over the next two months to ensure we adopt a structurally balanced budget in March.”

The Agriculture industry and online sales are the two leading pieces of soft sales tax revenue. However, Daugaard revealed a sales tax silver lining.

“Today I’m pleased to announce that the State has reached an agreement with Amazon to collect and remit state and local sales taxes in South Dakota. Their decision to collect sales tax doesn’t solve the sales tax issue for online purchases, but it’s a big step in the right direction."

According to Daugaard Amazon will start voluntarily collecting sales taxes in February and start remitting to the state in March.

An Amazon representative, Eileen Sullivan who is Senior Manager of US-State Public Policy, was on hand to represent the company at the Governor’s address.

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