Local sales tax rates have changed as a result of a new state sales tax that was passed by legislators on July 1.
The base state sales tax charge is now at 7.25 percent, down from 8.25 percent last year.
Businesses in California that sell consumer products — anything from shampoo to socks — must register with the state Board Of Equalization and pay the state's sales tax, which applies to all retail sales of goods and merchandise, except those sales specifically exempted by law.
The state sales tax can also vary from city to city, said Anita Gone, spokesperson for the state's Board of Equalization.
Gone said state sales tax range from 7.25 percent to 9.25 percent, depending on the region. She added that local governments have the option of increasing lcoal sales tax incrementally to pay for different needs in the area, from public safety to libraries.
Board rules state that allowable additional tax rates for state districts range from 0.10 percent to 1.00 percent per district. In some areas, there is more than one district tax in effect. In others, there is no district tax in effect.
The state sales tax supports state and local funds for projects, from education programs to traffic safety, Gone said.
Sales taxes for local areas are 7.75 percent for Lodi, 8.25 percent for Galt and 8 percent for Stockton.
According to the board's website, the state also imposes a use tax, which makes up part of the total sales tax. The use tax generally applies to the storage, use, or other consumption of items purchased in California from retailers in transactions not subject to the sales tax.
Use tax may also apply to purchases shipped to a California consumer from another state, including purchases made by mail order, telephone or Internet.
The sales and use tax rate in California has three parts: the state tax rate, the local tax rate, and any district tax rate that may be in effect, per board rules.
Retail businesses are required to report and pay the applicable district taxes for taxable sales and purchases.
State sale and use taxes date back to 1955, when the Bradley-Burns Uniform Local Sales and Use Tax Law was enacted to increase state's general fund revenue. The law authorizes counties to impose a sales and use tax. On January 1, 1962, all counties adopted ordinances for the Board of Equalization to collect the local tax.
Contact reporter Katie Nelson at firstname.lastname@example.org.