GardenShare

GardenShare

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

TAX ON GROCERIES HURTS THE POOR



Thirteen states and many localities tax the sale of groceries, even though the taxes disproportionately hurt the poor and may affect the quality, variety,and even the amount of food they can afford to put on the table. The reason: the taxes provide a steady source of revenue in volatile times, making it difficult for states to get rid of them without finding a way to make up the revenue. Alabama, Hawaii, Idaho, Kansas, Mississippi, Oklahoma and South Dakota tax groceries at the same rate as all other purchases;  Arkansas, Illinois, Missouri, Tennessee, Virginia and Utah tax food at a lower rate. And, because counties and localities sometimes collect food taxes even if their states don’t, people living in more than a third of the nation’s roughly 3,000 counties are taxed at some level on the food they buy at the store.The average tax rate is 4.3%, which translates to more than $200 for a family with an annual grocery bill of $5,000

Source: Stateline, 8/16/16, Grocery Taxes