Friday, February 16, 2007

Restaurant Spending Bill Withheld

SB68S01 got withheld by its sponsor on Wednesday, meaning that it probably won't go into law. The Utah Restaurant Association wanted the legislation to force counties to pay up on "tourism" taxes collected from Restaurants that is supposed to go towards tourism. The URA doesn't think counties are spending that money correctly. They even question whether the restaurant tax is a fair tax at all.

Let me stop right here to say that the restaurant tax does not equal a "tourism" tax. Many Utahns eat out as part of their regular routine. We don't leave the state every time we want our restaurant fix! And, the URA is probably right to question the fairness of the tax. If, in taxing restaurants, all that occurs is that the money is recycled back into restaurant hands, it would have been better to leave that money with the dining patrons in the first place. Likely, restaurants would adjust prices upward if a tax were removed. But it is far better for everyone if the money charged doesn't make its way through the intestinal tract of government first.

Clipper:Restaurant Bill No Longer On The Menu