To hear the Show Me Today interview with State Representative Marlene Terry, click below.

The sales tax for a new vehicle can cost hundreds of dollars and some Missourians don’t have that kind of money laying around. The cost can lead to some residents driving around with an expired temporary tag because they cannot afford to pay the sales tax.

Photo courtesy of the Missouri Department of Transportation

State Representative Marlene Terry, D-St. Louis, has pre-filed a bill that would allow the state to offer a payment plan to those who need one.

“None of us want to be in debt or indebted to anyone, especially when it comes to abiding by laws in the state of Missouri,” she said. “I was just trying to do something to help my fellow citizens get a clean start, so that everybody can be legally driving around in the state of Missouri because we don’t know what a person situation was and why they’re in that situation.”

The revenue loss to the state is unknown but Terry said she wants to find out.

“People even go to Illinois, where they don’t have to pay sales taxes included in their bill and that’s what they do,” said Terry. “Have you ever noticed how you ride around in Missouri and people live in Missouri and they have Illinois plates? Well, that’s what’s going on.”

Under the bill, the Department of Revenue could accept applications for payment plans from October 2023 to the end of September 2024. Terry said a bill passed last session allows the vehicle sales tax to be included into the sale of the vehicle.

Terry also recommends that buyers ask the car salesperson upfront how much the sales tax will cost, so buyers can better prepare.

Terry has pre-filed House Bill 58 for the upcoming legislative session, which begins January 4.

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