Missouri Senate seeks tax break for exercise

Wednesday, April 2, 2014 | 10:48 a.m. CDT

JEFFERSON CITY — Missouri senators have endorsed legislation intended to restore a tax exemption for exercise.

A bill given initial approval Tuesday night seeks to prevent state sales taxes from being collected on dues paid to fitness centers, gymnastics and dance studies, and other similar places.

Senators said the state Department of Revenue has been demanding large tax bills from some of those businesses. But lawmakers said they didn't intend for them to be taxed.

Missouri law charges sales tax on fees paid to places of "amusement, entertainment ... recreation, games and athletic events." The state Supreme Court has interpreted that to apply to exercise and fitness clubs.

Sponsoring Sen. Bob Dixon, a Springfield Republican, said he doesn't consider exercise to be recreation or amusement.

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dan elliott April 2, 2014 | 12:17 p.m.

Bad Idea - Food and Medicine, required for life, are taxed, this is not required, people can exercise without a membership. That means the people participating in these activities are more able to pay than some who only have money for food and medicine. If you want to lower taxes, lower for all by decreasing tax on food and medicine.

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