Report: Oklahoma 5th highest in U.S. in sales tax rates
BY WAYNE GREENE World Senior Writer
Monday, February 11, 2013
2/11/13 at 3:39 PM
OKLAHOMA CITY — If you buy something in Oklahoma, the government is going to take a bigger bite than just about anywhere else in the nation, according to a Monday report from the Tax Foundation.
The average combined state and local sales tax rate in Oklahoma is the fifth highest in the nation.
Only Tennessee, Arizona, Louisiana and Washington have higher combined rates.
The average combined rate in the state is 8.67 percent. Tennessee had the highest combined rate, 9.44 percent.
In the city of Tulsa within Tulsa County, the current combined sales tax rate is 8.517 percent.
“While graduated income tax rates and brackets are complex and confusing to many taxpayers, the sales tax is easier to understand: People can reach into their pocket and see the rate printed on a receipt,” said Tax Foundation economist Scott Drenkard. “Less known, however, are the local sales taxes collected in 37 states.
“These rates can be substantial, so a state with a moderate statewide sales tax rate could actually have a very high combined state-local rate compared to other states.”
Oklahoma’s 4.5 percent state sales tax is lower than that of any of the surrounding states. Texas, which has no state income tax, has a 6.25 percent state sales tax.
But the relatively high local sales tax rates in the Oklahoma — averaging 4.17 percent — push the state into the top combined levels. Only four states — Louisiana, Colorado, New York and Alabama — have higher average local sales tax rates than Oklahoma.
Read more in Tuesday's Tulsa World.