Press "Enter" to skip to content

Prospect of Initiative to Repeal Food Tax Drives Sunset Amendment to Pending Reduction of Sales Tax

Rick Weiland and his ballot question committee, Dakotans for Health, hasn’t even begun circulating its initiative petition to repeal South Dakota’s unusual and immoral sales tax on food, but the prospect of that initiative is already stirring Legislative action. Yesterday Senate Taxation attached a two-year sunset clause to House Bill 1137, Representative Chris Karr’s (R-11/Sioux Falls) proposal to reduce the state sales tax rate from 4.5% to 4.2%, because Republican leaders worry voters will approve the food-tax repeal in 2024:

The amendment to HB-1137 would cause the tax cut to automatically expire June 30, 2025, and return to the 4.5% rate.

Republican Sen. Joshua Klumb said the amendment was a precaution. An initiated measure calling for grocery purchases to be exempt from the state sales tax could make the 2024 election ballot. Lawmakers don’t know whether the state government treasury can afford both tax cuts.

The tax panel’s chair, Republican Sen. Jim Stalzer, said Senate Republican leadership asked him to bring the amendment [Bob Mercer, “Two-Year ‘Sunset’ Attached to Karr’s Tax-Cut Proposal,” KELO-TV, 2023.02.27].

Funny: Republican legislators appear to have more confidence in Rick Weiland’s ability to pass a food tax than they do in Governor Kristi Noem.


  1. O 2023-02-28 08:09

    Help me remember the math: reducing the overall sales tax .3% is the same as reducing the sales tax on food what percentage? I know Cory has done this siferin’.

  2. Jake 2023-02-28 09:26

    These GOP Republicans seem to have conveniently forgotten all abbot the millions of SD taxpayer $$$ they’ve squirreled away in “rainy day funds” the past years!

  3. John 2023-02-28 09:42

    SD Searchlight reports that the proposed sales tax reduction of 0.3% is an estimated tax cut of $104 million.
    Sources estimate that eliminating the state sales tax on food results in an estimated tax cut of $102 million.
    Both approximate a family “saving” of about $122 per year.

    What is missed are: 1) the immoral sales tax on food ought to also bar municipal sales tax on food; 2) food inflation will be one of the higher sub-elements in the inflation rate due to impending food and fertilizer shortages resultant from the Russian war on Ukraine, sanctions, etc. The food inflation will increase the food tax take.

  4. O 2023-02-28 09:54

    Thanks, John.

  5. Loren 2023-02-28 09:56

    This “sunset” is just another Republican Charlie Brown/Lucy/football tactic. Now you see it, now you don’t. Sorta like promising grocery tax relief during a campaign, all the time knowing the legislature would never approve. When will Charlie Brown, a.k.a. the SD electorate ever catch on? Looks like NEVER!

  6. ABC 2023-02-28 10:47

    So the R plan now is give us a 0.3% reduction in Sales tax revenue just for 2 years?

    Governor Weiland’s people will assess whether a passed Constitutional Amendment will trump a legislative sunset statute.

    Here’s the great news: since we will be 3 cents richer for every $10 we spend starting July 1, we will all be millionaires and billionaires long before the law expires, since we all know that 3 cents saved is millions earned, and our great fortune will continue and increase for many many years!

  7. Bob Newland 2023-02-28 12:25

    I spend about $5k a year on groceries for myself. This proposal allows me $15 more per year to spend foolishly on me.

  8. grudznick 2023-02-28 16:28

    That’s one free visit to the hookah lounge for you, Bob.

  9. MB 2023-03-01 05:24

    Where is that guy that was asking ‘what legislation have Dems introduced’ and I pointed out Dems fight w Initiated Measures, duh.

    We are here, using the levers available to affect governing, and as Cory points out, sometimes more effectovely than the Super Majority with their Queen can.

    Rick Weiland has probably set the legislative agenda more than anyone else in the past 10 years. Governing would be so much easier if it wasnt for all those darned people!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.