Tuesday, March 15, 2011

House Votes To Roll Back Vending Machine Fee

The House voted overwhelmingly today to roll back last year’s fee increase on vending machines, potentially helping many small businesses survive.

“It has become clear that we have to reassess last year’s policy decision to triple the fee on vending machine operators,” said state Rep. Charles Ortega, R-Altus. “The fee increase was clearly excessive and now threatens to drive many operators out of business, which will ultimately reduce state tax collections. By voting to roll back the increase, lawmakers voted today to provide some support to small business owners across Oklahoma”

Last year, lawmakers voted to triple the fee paid by vending machine operators, increasing it from $50 per machine to $150 apiece.

The increase was, in part, a response to last year’s budget shortfall. House Bill 1634, by Ortega, would reduce the fee from $150 to $75.

According to Tax Commission records, there are 54,323 vending machines across the state.

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