Two competing property tax relief measures that would boost so-called sin taxes and remove several sales and use tax exemptions for property tax relief go before the legislature’s Revenue Committee for testimony today.
Both LB314 and LB497 would increase tax rates on alcohol and tobacco, and both have provisions to end certain sales tax exemptions to provide more money to the state’s property tax relief fund.
Platte Institute Policy Director Sarah Curry will testify in opposition to LB314, saying local governments would not be required to provide property tax relief in exchange for additional state reimbursement.
Curry will be testifying in a neutral capacity on LB497, noting that the measure would resume sales taxes on groceries. She said she would also be highlighting that federal law does not allow sales taxes on groceries purchased with food stamps.
Meanwhile, the highlighted focus on the impact on Nebraska’s craft breweries has already generated some change to one of the bills. After the announcement the Governor was going to sponsor three simultaneous events March 1st in Lincoln, Omaha and Grand Island titled “Raise Glasses, Not Taxes”, Senator Tom Briese of Albion is proposing an amendment to LB314 that would provide some relief for craft brewers.