SD one of seven states with food sales tax - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

SD one of seven states with food sales tax

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Rep. Marc Feinstein has worked on getting rid of South Dakota's sales tax on food for eight years.

"Everybody eats food and gets grocery store consumables and everybody will benefit from it. So it isn't just directed at individuals who are poor." He said.

This year, it would have been revenue neutral.

Meaning the 4% tax on food would be gone. But a 0.35% tax would have been added to everything else that is taxable, bringing the tax to 4.35%.

"None of our neighbors do. Of the six neighbors that we have, Montana, Wyoming, Nebraska, Iowa, Minnesota and North Dakota, none of them have a sales tax on food." Said Rep. Feinstein.

Matt Gassen of Feeding South Dakota has been fighting along side Rep. Feinstein for a number of years.

"There's no tax that takes food directly off the table like this one does of people that are poor. So we're hoping this bill doesn't go away until it gets passed." He said.

Food at restaurants, pop and candy would still be taxed.

But staple items from a grocery store would not be.

Gassen said this tax would benefit everyone, but especially people struggling to make ends meet.

"It's just going to add more money to their food budget. $4 on every $100 spent. And what is $4 going to buy them? It's going to buy them another gallon of milk, it can buy them a pound of meat, some hamburger helper, a lot of those things that can really help stretch their budget." Gassen added.

Opponents of the bill say it is a steady tax that helps the state no matter the economy. And that there is no way to ensure the bill will be revenue neutral.

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