Warrenton drops talk of online tax

Adam Rollins, Staff Writer
Posted 1/3/22

Warrenton city leaders are no longer entertaining the possibility of a tax on online purchases from out of state, and have canceled a Jan. 11 public forum to discuss that topic, according to City …

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Warrenton drops talk of online tax

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Warrenton city leaders are no longer entertaining the possibility of a tax on online purchases from out of state, and have canceled a Jan. 11 public forum to discuss that topic, according to City Administrator Brandie Walters.

The tax on out-of-state online purchases, referred to as a “use tax” in Missouri, is an option local governments across the state are considering after the Missouri Legislature legalized such taxes in 2021. Warrenton’s elected leaders discussed their mixed feelings about such a tax in November, but decided to go ahead with getting public input in January.

In December, Walters said enough aldermen had come out against an online tax that the city decided to forego the discussion altogether.

“The majority of (aldermen) opted not to proceed with putting the use tax on the ballot in April, so that Jan. 11 public meeting has been canceled,” said Walters.

Thus far, several local towns have discussed the possibility of an online tax, but none have taken the next step of putting a tax on the ballot for municipal elections in April. Wright City officials confirmed in December that they, too, have decided against the tax, at least for now.

However, both the Warren County government and the state of Missouri already have existing use taxes that previously were much more limited in what they applied to. With the new state law, those use taxes can be expanded to any out-of-state purchases without a new vote of the people. Because of that, Warren County residents can expect to see a 6.225% tax applied to their online purchases starting in 2023.

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