How would you like to pay anywhere from 4% to 8% of your gross laundry receipts to your state government by way of a sales tax? Can’t happen? Guess again!! Iowa, Hawaii, New Mexico and West Virginia currently collect sales taxes from laundromats. Several other states have considered or proposed imposing such a tax. Among these states are Maine, Ohio, Florida, Kansas, Illinois and about a half dozen others.
The collection of a sales tax on vended laundry sales poses many problems. First, in an industry still dominated by the quarter the store owner will either have to pay the tax without collecting it from the customer ( 5% of $ 2.75 is $ .1375 ) or the customer will end up paying more ( the $2.75 climbs to $3.00 to cover the tax which then goes to $ .15). Second, this tax hurts working class families who can least afford it as they are the dominant demographic of laundromats. Third, Laundromats provide a much needed public health service. Also, laundromats all ready pay a sales tax on utilites in many states. So, taxing receipts which are based on the cost of the service would result in double taxation.
What can you do? Check out www.stoplaundrytax.com spearheaded by the Coin Laundry Association and donate to the fund being established to protect the sales tax exemption for vended laundry receipts whenever and wherever they are proposed. Waiting until the threat presents itself and trying to raise a lot of money on short notice is very risky and increases the odds of sales tax legislation being passed. Let’s not wait until its too late. Donate today !!