Posted on September 13, 2019 by hbrooks
HARTFORD – State Representative Mitch Bolinsky (R-106) on Thursday attended a press conference with House and Senate Republican lawmakers to discuss newly released details on the 7.35% “meals tax” set to go into effect October 1, 2019. The tax was included in the state budget passed by legislative Democrats and signed into law by Governor Ned Lamont during the 2019 legislative session.
According to a Department of Revenue Services (DRS) policy statement issued this week, the Democrat-approved and Lamont-encouraged 7.35% tax will be applied to a long list of food items that have never before been taxed.
The taxes will apply to not only prepared meals such as sandwiches, deli salads, pizza and hot buffet items, but also small packages of snacks, loose baked goods, wrapped salads, small salad mixes in the grocery store, store-cut servings of fresh fruit, small servings of ice cream and “meal replacement bars”. It also applies to fountain drinks, including coffee and any beverage sold with a newly taxable “meal.”
“This grocery tax is just another example of how the budget passed by Democrats this year hurts middle- and working-class families, seniors, and individuals in Newtown,” said Rep. Bolinsky.
“On Governor Lamont’s authority, DRS widened the net to create a new, full-blown food tax. The new definition of a ‘meal’ will put nearly everything we consume at risk of being taxed. This kind of deception is unacceptable and is not the ‘honest budgeting’ the Governor promised on the campaign trail.”
In June, Governor Lamont and legislative Democrats labeled the new tax as only a 1% tax increase on items already taxed at 6.35%. But, the DRS statement clarifies that the new 7.35% tax will now apply to many food items that have never been taxed at grocery stores.
“I opposed their initial proposal because it was overly vague and left too much room for interpretation to folks who cannot be trusted to spend our tax dollars responsibly,” added Bolinsky. “This tax is regressive and will make it even more difficult for our community’s most vulnerable populations to pay for some of their most basic food necessities. Enough is enough.”
DRS Examples of Taxable “Meals” (taxed at 7.35% in eating establishments AND grocery stores):
DRS Examples of Taxable Drinks (taxed at 7.35% in eating establishments AND grocery stores):
Please click here to view the DRS’ full policy statement.