Louisiana Needs More Tax Revenue
- Feb 23, 2016 | Gail Cole
In his opening address to the Louisiana legislature, Governor John Bel Edwards noted that while his predecessor “inherited a $1billion dollar surplus” upon taking office, he inherited a deficit of close to $1 billion and faces a $2 billion deficit in the upcoming fiscal year. He says, “We’ve lost our way. We’ve got to return to a sensible, balanced approach.”
His budget plan proposal includes increasing sales tax by one penny and increasing taxes on alcohol, and cigarettes. He also proposes a tax on sales made by remote vendors. The following measures have now been introduced in the legislature.
HB 14 seeks to levy an additional tax of one and two-twentieths of one cent per cigarette (22 cents per pack of 20). The current rate of tax per pack of $0.86 would increase to $1.08.
HB 27 would increase the excise tax levied on alcoholic beverages as follows:
- Liquors: from $0.66 per liter to $0.91 per liter
- Sparkling wines: from $0.42 per liter to $0.61 per liter
- Still wines:
- From $0.03 to $0.25 per liter when alcohol content is not more than 14% by volume
- From $0.06 to $0.53 per liter when alcohol content is more than 14% but not more than 24% by volume
- From $0.42 to $0.61 per liter when alcohol content is more than 24% by volume
- Beverages with a low alcoholic content and malt beverages: from $10 to $13.33 per 31-gallon barrel
HB 39 would levy a state automobile rental tax of 2.5% and a local tax of 0.5% of the gross proceeds derived from the lease or rental of an automobile.
Perhaps most controversial is HB 30, which would provide for the collection of sales and use taxes due on sales made in Louisiana by a remote dealer.
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