WV House to Vote on Food Tax

By: Will Jones
By: Will Jones

The House of Delegates passed a measure Sunday to give another $80 million dollars toward the State Teacher Pension Fund, but they didn't take any action on the food tax proposal.

For many years in West Virginia, the state government has decided how much extra to charge you for food. Governor Joe Manchin, however, wants to lower the food tax.

“I think it was something that will help a lot of working class people who struggle to get through day to day with expenses,” said Manchin. “And if we can reduce it a little, it can help everybody.”

He wants to reduce it from five cents per dollar to three cents by mid-2008. The Senate has already endorsed the bill.

Manchin's proposal has been hard to digest for some in the state legislature. Some delegates say they prefer to knock just one cent off the food tax for now.

Manchin also wants to set a six percent tax on "bad" foods such as candy, soft drinks and vending machine food, but some say that might be too much trouble for mom and pop grocers.

Some would just like the food tax to go away completely, but some delegates warn that would force the state to run on empty. So food is the source of energy for the public and the state government.

The House of Delegates is expected to vote on the food tax proposal and the rest of Governor Manchin's tax bills in Monday's session at 6 p.m.

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