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Wisconsin provides sales tax relief for veterans organizations


veterans, sales tax exemptions

Wisconsin has enacted a sales tax exemption to benefit state veterans organizations. A new sales and use tax exemption for tangible personal property and taxable services sold to Wisconsin state veterans organizations takes effect July 1, 2018.

In addition to everyday purchases, the exemption applies to building materials purchased by a contractor who transfers the materials to a state veterans organization as part of constructing a facility for the organization. The measure defines “facility” as “any building, shelter, parking lot, parking garage, athletic field, athletic park, storm sewer, water supply system, or sewerage and waste water treatment facility.” It doesn’t include streets or roads.

The inclusion of wastewater treatment facilities could have something to do with projects planned by Green Veterans, an organization that helps veterans “learn about sustainable building and green living, while helping ease the hardship of military-to-civilian transition” and recently opened a Wisconsin chapter. Green Veterans is involved in “food production, waste remediation, wastewater treatment, water conservation,” and more.

According to the fiscal report provided by the Wisconsin Department of Administration, Division of Budget and Finance, annual state sales and use tax revenue will decrease by approximately $586,500 due to this exemption. County and stadium district sales taxes are expected to decline by $45,000 per year. Additional details are available in the text of Assembly Bill 402.

Other states provide sales tax relief for veterans

Wisconsin isn’t the only state to provide sales tax relief for veterans, but benefits vary widely from state to state. Much of the tax relief centers on motor vehicles. For example, Arkansas allows a veteran who was blinded as a result of military service to purchase a vehicle exempt from sales tax once every two years; and Georgia provides an exemption for vehicles purchased by disabled veterans. In Oklahoma, veterans who are 100 percent disabled are exempt from paying all sales tax.

As of November 11, 2017, all honorably discharged veterans of all branches of the service may shop tax-free at the online Army & Air Force Exchange

For some retailers, keeping up with sales and use tax exemptions eats up a lot of time. This is especially true when exemption certificates are involved. Automating exemption certificate management can save time and money, as well as help prepare for audits. Learn more.