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Sacramento Sales Tax Increase On 2020 Ballot?

Sales Tax Increase In California

A Sacramento sales tax increase may be on the November 2020 ballot for local residents. The draft proposal, referred to as Measure A, intends to raise $8 billion over the next 40 years to bring improvements to issues like transportation, climate change, and even homelessness. For voters, these developments come at a cost. In order to raise the necessary funds to cover everything within the proposal, city and county leaders propose increasing the local sales tax a half a cent. If approved, the new tax would increase the total Sacramento sales tax to a total of 9 cents per dollar.

However, the likelihood of this proposal even being placed on the November 2020 ballot is beginning to look very slim. Measure A is simply a revamp of Measure B, which was placed on the November 2016 ballot and received 65% of the vote, just 2% under the required 67% to pass by state law. Additionally, the new tax would be 3rd active transportation related tax within the last two decades. Back in 2004, voters approved a 30-year Sacramento sales tax that increased sales tax by a half-cent. In 2018, California officials increased the state’s gas tax from 41.7 cents to 47.3 cents.

California sales tax issues will appear on a number of local ballots in the fall. Local advocates contend that another Sacramento sales tax hike is more than adequate coverage for the intended transportation projects. It is believed that the measure stands the greatest chance of receiving the required 67% by allocating the funds to what voters actually deem necessary for daily travel. Sacramento councilman Steve Cohn says he thinks the money would be better spent on car travel alternatives like light rail tracks and a downtown station. A recent poll showed that residents are more likely to support repairs and repaving of the streets. The Sacramento Transportation Authority will vote on a final project list which will then be presented to city councils for approval to be placed on the November 2020 ballot.

Have a question or comment? Contact Aaron Giles.


Aaron C. Giles is the Founder and President of Agile Consulting Group. Aaron spent five years working within the specialty niche of Sales & Use Tax at Brown & Associates before forming his own firm in 2005. He has worked hundreds of audits in states all across the U.S. during that time and has delivered savings of over $75M in the form of refunds and credits to his clients. Today, he leads a group of talented, detail-oriented colleagues who focus exclusively on Sales & Use Tax.

Some of our firms’ greatest achievements have come in successfully arguing new and unique perspectives to existing tax law in various states enabling our clients to claim exemptions on categories of purchases previously held to be taxable. Included in these victories are: communication services taxes for religious nonprofit hospitals in FL, bulk purchases of drugs in VA, specific surgical tools and instruments for healthcare providers in TX, printing plates in GA, railroad utilities in KY, and most recently software in AL.

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