February 13, 2016

House passes plan to resume taxing of out-of-state vehicle purchases

The House has approved an attempt at resuming collection of taxes on vehicles purchased out-of-state, after a state Supreme Court ruling halted it earlier this year.

Representative Caleb Jones (Photo courtesy, Missouri House Communications)

The Court ruled that Missouri should not have been collecting sales tax on vehicles bought outside Missouri. An amendment offered by Representative Caleb Jones (R-California) would take a new approach by redefining a sale. “It simply states that the consummation of a sale of a motor vehicle out-of-state is deemed consummated whenever it is registered here by the owner at the Department of Revenue.”

Representative Craig Redmon (R-Canton) says cities and counties must be allowed to resume collection of those taxes.

“In my district (in northeast Missouri), on the low side if we don’t get this reenacted, in one year that district’s going to lose $420,000. On the high side, that’s going to be one million, three hundred thousand. That’s doing 80 cars a week at $10,000 a car. That’s a huge financial impact to our state if we don’t do something.”

Representatives Nick Marshall (R-Platte City) and Stanley Cox (R-Sedalia) say the proposal, by redefining when a sale is closed, is an innovative end-run around the Constitution, and say the tax should be put to a vote of the people.

The language was amended to SB 591, which was sent back to the Senate for consideration on a vote of 122-21.