JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) – The Missouri House approved legislation Thursday aimed at shielding gyms, fitness centers and others from sales taxes.
Lawmakers contend the state’s tax laws have been applied in ways never intended.
Missouri law establishes a sales tax on admission and fees “paid to, or in any place of amusement, entertainment or recreation, games and athletic events.” Several court cases have focused on that law, and the Missouri Supreme Court ruled in 2001 that athletic, exercise and fitness clubs count as places of recreation and that fees paid to them are subject to sales tax. In 2008, the high court concluded sales tax must be paid for fees a fitness facility said it received for personal training services.
The House legislation calls for levying sales tax when people are charged to watch an activity but not when they pay to participate. For example, sales tax would not be charged for dance lessons but would apply for a ticket to watch dancers perform.
“Children or adults who want to be in gymnastics or any individual who wants to join a gym, we should not be discouraging those people from doing healthy activities,” said sponsoring Rep. Eric Burlison, R-Springfield.
House members passed the bill 123-26, and it now goes to the state Senate, which approved its own version last week
Lawmakers and business organizations have voiced displeasure with how tax laws have been applied. Sen. Will Kraus said Wednesday that a Senate committee should investigate.
© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
MORE POLITICS NEWS:
- Trump Visits Boeing Plant In St. Louis, Talks Up Tax Reform
- Duckworth Will Not ‘Mindlessly Cater To Whims Of Cadet Bone Spurs’
- Austin Peterson Adds His Name to Senate Race
- Republican Senate Candidate Austin Petersen Sees Opportunity in Hawley Doubts
- Attorney Al Watkins: Grand Jury Issues Subpoena In Investigation Of Greitens
- Missouri Lawmaker Wants House Intern Program Suspended