• Fri. Apr 19th, 2024

Property tax relief bill proposes shifting burden to sales taxes, raising concerns for business owners

BySamantha Johnson

Mar 28, 2024
Property tax relief bill proposes shifting burden to sales taxes, raising concerns for business owners

The Nebraska Legislature took up a legislative package designed to provide property tax relief to Nebraskans during its first round of debate. Governor Jim Pillen, who made this issue a priority, described the proposed tax package as “historic” and “transformational.” Some state senators have compared Nebraska’s tax system to a lop-sided stool with too much pressure on property owners, prompting the need for relief.

However, organizations like the Nebraska Chamber of Commerce have opposed shifting the tax burden to consumers through sales tax increases. Some business owners are concerned about specific hikes, such as a proposed 100% tax on CBD and hemp products, which could lead to a decrease in sales tax revenue as businesses struggle to stay afloat. Sarah Linden, CEO of Grateful Green, pointed out that the proposed tax increase could hurt lower to middle-income individuals who rely on these products for medical purposes.

At Brewsky’s Food and Spirits, owner Brian Kitten expressed worry about a proposed 20% tax on games of skill machines, as this could impact his ability to keep his business running. Kitten emphasized the importance of these machines in generating revenue, especially during challenging times like the pandemic. He fears that implementing this tax could lead to further financial difficulties.

The bill is subject to change while being debated by senators, who may spend several days adjusting the language and specifics of the legislation. The goal remains to provide much-needed property tax relief to Nebraskans, though the path to achieving this relief is still being discussed in the legislative chamber.

By Samantha Johnson

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