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Ontario council approves sales tax proposal

By Pat Caldwell
The Enterprise
VALE — Shoppers buying goods in Ontario will find a new item on their receipts starting in January – a sales tax.
The Ontario City Council unanimously approved the 1 percent sales tax last week. Businesses will have to start charging it come Jan. 1, a step that follows a year of debate and discussion by city officials, community leaders, and voters.
The tax is considered by the council as the best way to solve the city’s financial woes.
Ashland and Yachats are the only other Oregon cities with a sales tax. City officials expect the new tax to produce about $3 million each year. The point-of-sale tax is narrowly tailored to retail goods while vehicle sales and agriculture products are exempt.
Also products such as gasoline and tobacco, which are subject to state tax, will not be part of the proposed . . .