Legislative leaders say there’s now broad agreement that the state should start collecting sales taxes on Internet purchases. That Internet sales tax may help finance a new, 890-MILLION dollar state economic growth fund. House Speaker Christopher Rants, a republican from Sioux City, says under current law, Iowans are supposed to be paying the tax on Internet purchases now, but the process is so cumbersome, no one’s doing it. Rants says it’s unfair to Main Street businesses, and says “our economy is moving more and more toward ‘remote sales'” and it’s time to ensure the sales tax system is fair for Main Street retailers. Rants was among the first to suggest the Internet sales tax as a way to bankroll the so-called “Iowa Values” fund. Senate Republican Leader Stewart Iverson of Dows says tough work’s ahead to try to reach agreement on three key issues. Iverson says hopefully there’ll be resolution this week on tax reform, changes in business regulations and a new state growth fund. House Republican Leader Chuck Gipp of Decorah says lawmakers hope to wrap up the 2003 Legislative session in two weeks. Iverson says at this stage, “everything is possible.”