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California may start taxing all ammunition sales

Last year a series of high-profile mass shootings cast a national spotlight on the issue of gun control, dividing the nation on the issue of whether more or less regulation is the key to preventing gun violence.

Many states are working on their own gun control legislation, focused on a variety of measures, including banning assault weapons and high-capacity magazines or increasing the use of background checks during gun purchases. This has led some gun rights advocates to buy up large stockpiles of ammunition in recent months. But here in California, lawmakers are considering a tax law change that could affect the state’s gun control landscape.

California lawmakers are considering a proposed law that would place a 10 percent tax on all firearm ammunition sold in the state. The bill was recently approved by the California Assembly’s Revenue and Taxation Committee. The state Board of Equalization has estimated that about $92.4 million will be generated by the new tax.

Gun owners and others who buy ammunition will definitely feel the pinch as they try to stock up. However, law enforcement agencies will be exempt from the tax. Supporters of the bill hope to put the generated revenue toward improving public safety in high-crime areas.

This illustrates the delicate balance that lawmakers must observe when crafting tax laws. On one hand, excessive taxation can be a serious drain on a state’s consumers. However, taxes are a major source of revenue for important state programs that everyone enjoys. If you have a question about taxes it may be wise to consult an experienced tax law attorney.

Source: Opposing Views, “California Approves $92M Ammo Tax To Combat Gun Violence,” Dabney Bailey, May 17, 2013

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