Local Option Tax

Local Option Taxes Die in Committee

Mar 28, 2017
Jackie Yamanaka

Senate Bill 331, like Montana’s existing resort tax, would have allowed larger municipalities to ask their voters whether to impose a sales tax on so-called luxury goods and services purchased by tourists and visitors.  This bill had a twist in that it would sunset after the identified infrastructure project was completed.

State Senator Mike Phillips, D-Bozeman, had a local option sales tax bill drafted, even though past Legislatures have rejected such proposals.

Phillips said what makes this proposal different is it would be temporary. The tax, to be enacted by local voters, would be in effect only long enough to pay for what he calls "critical" public works or infrastructure project and a minimum of 10% of the revenue raised would have to go to homeowners in the form of property tax relief.