News Releases

Sales Tax on Food and Utilities Drops to 3.9% on July 1, 2002

Other fully suspended exemptions continue at the 4% rate

June 27, 2002

BATON ROUGE - Beginning July 1, 2002, Act 22 of the 2002 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature lowers the sales tax rate from 4% to 3.9% on food for home consumption, electricity, water utility services, and steam.

Louisiana Department of Revenue Secretary Cynthia Bridges says the 3.9% sales tax rate will apply to all food sold for preparation and consumption in the home. This includes bakery products, dairy products, soft drinks, fresh fruits and vegetables, and packaged food requiring further preparation by the purchaser. Items such as malt beverages, beer, other alcoholic beverages, distilled water, carbonated water, water in containers, vitamins, and ice are not considered food items and will be taxable at 4%.

Except for food for home consumption and utilities, Act 22 continues the 4% sales tax rate on all other items whose sales tax exemptions have been suspended since July 1, 2000. Bridges says items continuing to be taxed at 4% include, but are not limited to, sales of newspapers, purchases by nonprofit electrical cooperatives, purchases of butane, propane, and other liquefied petroleum gases for residential consumption, purchases of certain materials for use in commercial printing, purchases by organizations that sponsor Mardi Gras balls, sales of tickets by Little Theater organizations, sales of certain supplies for use in harvesting catfish or crawfish, and purchases by Ducks Unlimited and other organizations dedicated exclusively to the conservation of North American waterfowl and wetland habitat.

More complete information about items taxed at the 3.9% rate and at the 4% rate is available from Revenue Information Bulletin 02-010. This Revenue Information Bulletin is available on the Internet at the Louisiana Department of Revenue’s web site, under Rules and Legislation.

For media inquiries, contact:
Byron Henderson
Public Information Director