July 24th, 2017

August 8, 2017 Ballot Issue: Out-of-State Vehicle Sales Tax Continuation FAQs

Is this a new tax? No. The City of Carthage currently collects this Sales Tax and has been collecting it for many years. The question is on the ballot only as a result of the Missouri Supreme Court decision and the State Legislature’s fix that followed. If the question is not placed on the ballot by November 2018, the tax would cease to be collected beginning March 1, 2019.

How does the tax affect me? The tax only applies to you if you purchase a motor vehicle, trailer, boat or outboard motor from out-of-state or from other than a licensed Missouri dealer. Similar purchases from licensed Missouri dealers made in-state are subject to the local Sales Tax regardless of the vote on this ballot question.

Why is it important for Carthage to continue collecting this tax? The existence of the tax creates a level playing field for Carthage and other Missouri dealerships. If the existing tax were to end, Missouri dealerships would be at a competitive disadvantage with out-of-state dealerships, which would no longer be required to collect the City tax. This encourages residents to make purchases from out-of-state businesses, which do not create local jobs or reinvest in our community.

How much money will the City of Carthage lose if this is not collected? The City would lose approximately $63,000 to $70,000 annually if the Sales Tax is not collected on out-of-state purchases of titled property. These dollars currently provide funding for city services such as street repair, police and fire protection, and parks services.

How does the ballot question read? The question reads as follows:
Shall the City of Carthage continue applying and collecting the local sales tax on the titling of motor vehicles, trailers, boats, and outboard motors that were purchased from a source other than a licensed Missouri dealer? Disapproval of this measure will result in a reduction of local revenue to provide for vital services for the City of Carthage and it will place Missouri dealers of motor vehicles, outboard motors, boats and trailers at a competitive disadvantage to non-Missouri dealers of motor vehicles, outboard motors, boats and trailers.
YES × NO ×

What does it take to pass this measure? A simple majority of the voters will decide this issue.
A Yes vote means:
There will be no increase to your existing taxes and no change to City revenue. All motor vehicles, regardless of method or location of purchase, will be subject to City Sales Tax. Missouri licensed dealers will be placed on a level playing field with non-licensed dealers.
A No vote means:
Vehicles purchased through a source other than a Missouri licensed dealer will still be subject to State taxes. The City will no longer receive taxes on these purchases, resulting in a reduction of approximately $63,000 to $70,000 annually. In-state dealerships will be at a competitive disadvantage with non-licensed dealers.

Who Supports the Ballot Initiative?
Carthage Chamber of Commerce
Missouri Association of Counties
Carthage Economic Development
United for Missouri
Missouri Chamber of Commerce Missouri Municipal League
Missouri Auto Dealers Association

View Press Release (PDF)

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