Ohio governor wants to tax funerals, concerts, parking garages

Under Republican Ohio Gov. John Kasich’s proposed sales-tax expansion plan, Ohioans may soon be paying sales tax on music downloads, parking garages and even funerals.

Following a request from the Columbus Dispatch, the governor’s office released a comprehensive list of what would be included under the expansion.

“Essentially, the tax would be assessed on all but about 40 of types of economic activity,” the Dispatch reported.

Exempted items include health care related expenses, education, housing and certain utilities. Other exemptions include items deemed “personal instruction” ” in golf, dance and similar activities and services such as day care, veterinary services for livestock and mining services.

The scope of the new sales tax proposal, however, is broad. It will include charges on bank services, bowling allies, hunting and fishing guilds, and amusement parks, concerts and sporting events that are not deemed educational.

To offset the broad expansion of sales tax collection, the governor proposes to reduce the state sales-tax rate from 5.5 to 5 percent starting in September. Applied broadly, the sales tax is expected raise $1.8 billion a year in revenue.

Concurrently, Kasich’s tax proposal cuts state income taxes by roughly $2 billion a year, which would shift the financing of state government from income taxes to more consumption-based taxation.

The administration says that after three years, the new tax structure would create an overall tax break of $1.4 billion to taxpayers.

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