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Grocery tax cut to take effect

Shoppers at grocery stores in Randolph County will see a one-cent reduction in the state sales tax on groceries beginning on Friday as part of a statewide reduction that takes affect on that day.

The change will reduce the sales tax on food from 10 percent to 9 percent for most purchases in Randolph County.

Passed during the final days of the legislative session, the law sponsored by State Rep. Danny Garrett (R-Trussville) and State Sen. Andrew Jones (R-Centre) will drop the state’s sales tax on groceries by 1 percent on September 1 automatically and an additional 1 percent as soon as September 2024, 2025 or a later year if the state projects 3.5 percent growth in the Education Trust Fund (ETF) for the next fiscal year.

The average growth rate in the ETF annually is 3.6 percent, according to the Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama.

“I’m very pleased that working Alabamians will begin to see relief at grocery store checkouts around the state on Friday. A grocery tax cut has been talked about for decades, but the Alabama Legislature stepped up this year and made it happen through a bipartisan effort resulting in the largest tax cut in state history,” Jones told 1819 News on Monday.

According to the Alabama Department of Revenue, the state sales tax on food will be reduced from 4 percent to 3 percent on September 1.

Most Randolph County residents pay another 6 percent in county and/or municipal sales tax on retail purchases.

The state sales and use tax rates will be further reduced to 2 percent on September 1, 2024, if there is sufficient growth in the state Education Trust Fund.

According to U.S. News and World Report, it is estimated that the average Alabaman spends anywhere between $250 and $400 per month on groceries, meaning this sales tax reduction could create nearly $200 per year in savings for a family of four.

The sales tax reduction applies only to food. The rate will remain unchanged for all other retail items. Food has the same meaning as the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) definition. SNAP-eligible food items generally include any food or food product for home consumption, except alcoholic beverages, tobacco, hot foods or hot food products ready for immediate consumption.

Shoppers at grocery stores, like WM Grocery in Roanoke, will see a statewide sales tax reduction of 1 percent on their food purchases starting Friday.

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