A St. Charles business owner said the city is charging him a tax on top of a tax.
Andy Woodson, who owns Big Woody’s BBQ, said he took notice of the issue when he had to take over the book-keeping from his wife, who was ill.
The City of St. Charles charges many local businesses a one percent tourism tax. But, that one percent includes the 7.45 percent sales tax that businesses collect.
“It didn’t make any sense to me,” Woodson said. “I think we’re being taxed unfairly. The money collected from the state of Missouri is not our money, and we’re being taxed on that money.”
Five on Your Side contacted the City of St. Charles. Spokesperson Beth Norviel said the sales tax is included in a business’ gross receipts.
“The tax and the definition of 'gross receipts' were voted on and approved by the citizens of St. Charles in 1985, and as stated in the ordinance, the tax is 'used to promote tourism, conventions and other related activities in the City of St. Charles.'" Norviel said in a statement.
Woodson said the ordinance costs him a few hundred dollars a year, which he does not pass along to his customers. For him, it’s more about the principle.
“The money we collect for the state of Missouri never belongs to us, and we’re being taxed on that, just because they want more money, I guess,” Woodson said.
Five on Your Side contacted the Missouri Department of Revenue. A spokesperson said, since the state does not collect the tourism tax, it is a local matter between the business owner and the city.
For more information on the City of St. Tourism Tax Form, click here.