The sponsor of a Louisiana bill that sought to impose a 4 percent sales tax on self-storage leases and other commercial services has withdrawn the measure, according to the national Self Storage Association (SSA). State Rep. Kirk Talbot apparently withdrew the bill yesterday during a Ways and Means Committee hearing.
The proposal (House Bill 610) was one of several tax-related bills sponsored by Talbot during the current legislative session. He is a member of the Ways and Means Committee, which has several members who strongly objected to Gov. Bobby Jindal’s plan to phase out the state personal income tax without measures to determine how the state would recover the lost revenue. Committee Chair Joel Robideaux indefinitely deferred several bills on Monday that would have phased out the tax over multiple years. Jindal shelved his own plan last week but called on lawmakers to propose a viable plan to eliminate the income tax.
Talbot’s tax-swap plan included reducing personal income taxes, while extending state sales tax to some services, such as self-storage, that are currently untaxed. He favors a plan that would drop the state income tax to a flat rate of 1.9 percent but also said this week he will not push for a comprehensive tax package or an independent repeal bill this year.
The sales tax bill was introduced on March 29 and referred to the Ways and Means Committee on April 8, but SSA officials credited the Louisiana Self Storage Association for quickly opposing the legislation. Former board chairs Lana Griffin and Kevin Langley were present during the committee hearing when the bill was withdrawn, according to the SSA.
Like many states, Louisiana is facing a budget deficit along with financial challenges in health care and higher education. Sales tax bills have also been introduced in Michigan and North Carolina, the SSA said.