- Associated Press - Tuesday, March 24, 2015

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - The Maryland Senate has voted to make third-party travel websites pay all of the state’s sales tax, because bill supporters say they currently are getting around paying the full amount.

The Senate voted 31-16 for the bill Tuesday.

Supporters say it closes a loophole for online travel companies, which only pay the sales tax on a discounted price it pays the hotel. The bill requires them to remit the same amount of sales tax collected from customers as Maryland’s hotels do.

But Philip Minardi, a spokesman for the Travel Technology Association, says courts in other states have ruled websites are remitting the proper amount. Minardi also says it would hurt brick-and-mortar travel agents, because they will have to pay an added sales tax.

The bill now goes to the House.

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