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Local Sales Tax Charge Returns to All Vehicle Sales

 Tuesday, April 2 was Election Day in Clark County.

Tuesday, April 2 was Election Day in Clark County.

By Mike Scott

Your next trip to the local license office might be more expensive.

On Friday, July 5, Missouri Governor Jay Nixon signed legislation eliminating use tax on motor vehicles, trailers, boats and motors, and replacing it with a sales tax.

In March of 2012, the Missouri Supreme Court ruled that Missourians purchasing vehicles from out-of-state dealers or other individuals would not have to pay sales tax on that purchase.

Counties, such as Clark County, which had not previously passed a use tax, were then no longer allowed to collect a sales tax on purchase from individuals or from out of state. This created a budget shortfall in many counties.

Clark County imposes four separate one-half cent sales taxes, and Kahoka has it’s own one-half cent sales tax.

Senate Bill 22, which was signed by Nixon on Friday, included an emergency clause, so the tax changes went into effect on Saturday, July 6.

According to the bill summary: “This act eliminates both state and local use taxes on the storage, use or consumption of motor vehicles, trailers, boats, or outboard motors. This act specifies that a sales tax is to be collected for the titling of such property. The rate of tax associated with titling will be the sum of state sales tax and the local sales tax rate in effect at the address of the owner of the property.”

The bill also requires counties the had not previously approved a use tax to hold an vote before November 2016, to decide whether or not to repeal the tax. If no vote is held, counties must stop collecting the tax at that time.

The bill summary explains the issue like this: All local taxing jurisdictions that have not previously approved a local use tax must put to a vote of the people whether to discontinue collecting sales tax on the titling of motor vehicles purchased from a source other than a licensed Missouri dealer. If a taxing jurisdiction does not hold such a vote before November 2016, the taxing jurisdiction must cease collecting the sales tax. Taxing jurisdictions may at any time hold a vote to repeal the tax. Language repealing the tax must also be put to a vote of the people any time 15% of the registered voters in a taxing jurisdiction sign a petition requesting such.


To read SB 22, follow this link: