state taxes

Whiskey barrel tax exemption bill goes to the governor

The House voted 78-12 Monday to exempt Jack Daniel’s whiskey barrels and those of smaller Tennessee distillers from paying property taxes. An attorney general’s opinion says they are subject to being taxed and Moore County – home of the Jack Daniel’s distillery in Lynchburg – wants to do so. Taxing the barrels as personal property would mean more than $2 million in new revenue for the county.

The Senate had approved the bill (SB2076) earlier on a 30-0 vote, so it goes to Gov. Bill Haslam for his presumed signature — or maybe without his signature as a bow to the AG opinion.  The bill was pushed by lobbyists for the distilleries — Jack Daniel’s and others — and opposed by local government lobbying groups including the Tennessee Municipal League and the Tennessee County Services Association contending the tax break amounted to special treatment for one group in violation of the state constitution. Proponents of the bill sharply disputed the AG opinion.

Previous post HERE.

TN tax take in March: Complicated but basically about what was expected

Press release from Department of Finance and Administration

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Department of Finance and Administration Commissioner Larry Martin (Friday) announced that Tennessee tax revenue fell short of budgeted estimates in March. Overall March revenues totaled $1.1 billion, which is $84.1 million more than the state collected in March of 2017, but $2 million less than the budgeted estimate for the month.

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Legislature approves new $2 tax on strip club customers

The legislature has given final approval  to a bill levying a $2 tax on each customer entering a “sexually oriented business” – or strip club. Revenue raised from the tax under the measure, as introduced, was earmarked a fund to benefit survivors of sex trafficking, paying for things like more beds and programs at sex trafficking rehab centers, though changed via amendment to state that’s only a general intent.

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State revenue: A bit below budget in February; year-to-date take shows $181M surplus

Press release from Department of Finance and Administration

NASHVILLE, Tenn. –  Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration Commissioner Larry Martin announced today that Tennessee tax revenue fell short of budgeted estimates in February. Overall February revenues were $884.9 million, which is $38.2 million more than we received in February one year ago, but were $3.4 million less than the state budgeted. The overall growth rate for February was 4.51 percent.

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AG contradicts Jack Daniels’ bill — says whiskey barrels can be taxed

A legal opinion from the state attorney general’s office says the barrels used to age whiskey in Tennessee distilleries are subject to property taxes paid by businesses, despite a contention to the contrary in a bill pending before the General Assembly.

Producers of Jack Daniels whiskey have been pushing the bill (SB2076) since officials in Moore County laid plans to begin applying the tax to aging barrels, something not done in the past. The fiscal note prepared by legislative staff estimates that would mean about $2.8 million in new revenue for Tennessee’s smallest county.

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State revenue down in January, still ahead of budget for fiscal year

Press release from Department of Finance and Administration

NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration Commissioner Larry Martin today announced that overall January state tax revenues posted less than expected, while year-to-date state revenues remain more than budgeted. Revenues for January totaled $1.4 billion, and were 3.18 percent less than revenues received in the same time period one year ago, and were $25 million less than budgeted.

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TN Supreme Court rejects refund of liquor stores’ overpaid taxes

Press release from Administrative Office of the Courts

Nashville, Tenn. – In a unanimous opinion, the Tennessee Supreme Court ruled that a taxpayer must pay disputed municipal taxes under protest before suing for a refund.

The city of Morristown, based on a state statute, adopted an ordinance imposing an inspection fee on licensed alcoholic beverage retailers. The city set the fee at 8 percent of the wholesale price based on the county’s population. By 2011, the county’s population increased, and under the ordinance, the inspection fee should have decreased to a maximum fee of 5 percent of the wholesale price. However, from 2011–2014, the city of Morristown continued to charge alcoholic beverage retailers 8 percent inspection fees instead of the authorized 5 percent fees.  Continue reading

December state revenue $171.6M over budget estimate

Press release from Department of Finance and Administration

NASHVILLE, Tenn. –  Tennessee Department of Finance and Administration Commissioner Larry Martin announced today that revenues for December posted higher than expected and exceeded the monthly revenues from the previous year.  State revenues for December were $1.4 billion, which is a growth of 11.34 percent and $139.9 million more than December 2016.

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U.S. Supreme Court takes up state sales tax dispute; Haslam and Slatery hopeful

Gov. Bill Haslam and state Attorney General Herbert Slatery are both hailing the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision to hear arguments in a case they hope will authorize states to require retailers to collect sales taxes even if they have no physical presence within the state, reports the Times Free Press.

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Airbnb to begin collecting taxes for state Department of Revenue

Airbnb will collect state and local sales taxes from the 7,700 Tennesseans who rent their homes through the online company and send the money to the state Department of Revenue under an agreement reached Wednesday, reports The Tennessean. Currently, each individual Airbnb host is responsible for collecting and remitting the taxes.

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