Trucker tax relief passes Arkansas Senate

| 3/17/2003

The Arkansas Senate March 13 unanimously approved HB1030, which would cap the sales tax on trucks in Arkansas.

Immediately after the 35-0 vote, the bill was moved back to the House, which has already approved it once, so that chamber could give its OK to changes in the bill. Rep. Don House, D-Walnut Ridge, the bill’s chief sponsor, said House approval is essentially a given.

The new version would charge the state’s sales tax on the first $9,150 of the value of a tractor and on the first $1,000 of the value of a trailer. House said that would make the tax on a trailer $51.25, and the maximum tax on a tractor $469.

The new version does not address the issue of Arkansas truckers who have been base plated in Oklahoma. The state’s Department of Finance and Administration has indicated it will collect back taxes on truckers who return to Arkansas if they purchased their trucks in the past three years. Those truckers could face tax bills of up to $6,000.

The bill had contained an amnesty provision, allowing those truckers to return to the state without paying back taxes. The Arkansas attorney general issued an opinion that the amnesty was unconstitutional, and it was removed.

--by Mark H. Reddig, associate editor