With Illinois’ Tax Freedom Day right around the corner, a taxpayer advocacy group has compiled a list of the oddest taxes nationwide.
Taxes ranging from a single-man tax in Missouri, to Connecticut’s diaper tax, to Arkansas’ tattoo tax made Freedom Partners’ “The Most Absurd Tax” list. Illinois’ most absurd tax was a soda fountain syrup tax. Chicago charges a 9 percent tax on soda fountain syrup compared with a 3 percent city tax on soda in cans.
“Often the rates are differing based on policy makers’ beliefs about what is more discretionary or perhaps what is less healthy,” Jared Walczak, economist for the Tax Foundation, said.
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Walczak said cities such as Chicago resort to odd taxes as a means to fill budget holes. “You get these nickel and diming on a variety of different items.”
Jared Labell, director of operations for Taxpayers United of America, said over time these types of odd taxes become costly.
“When those are counted and added up, taxpayers start to reflect on how much is really coming out of their pocket,” Labell said.
The Tax Foundation calculates Tax Freedom Day, the day when people start working for themselves rather than to pay federal, state and local taxes. This year in Illinois the date is April 29.