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New Year, new laws, new mixed drink sales tax

POSTED: Thursday, January 2, 2014 - 5:46pm
UPDATED: Thursday, January 2, 2014 - 10:27pm

The celebrations may be over but bar and restaurant owners are still dealing with the headache of the New Year and the changes that come with it.

"It's going to take a little bit of time to make the transition because you have to make sure, for your book keeping records, that everything is in place so we have to start the New Year on point," said Debbie Montalbano, co-owner of Casa Rodriguez in Downtown Bryan.

Effective January 1, 2014 businesses that sell mixed drinks now see a tax drop from 14 to 6.7 percent.

But with that decrease though comes a new 8.5 percent sales tax for the consumer.

Chris Scotti, executive director of the Northgate Association explains, "They basically lowered taxes on the back end that the bar pays and created, for the first time, a sales tax on the front end and now the different owners are trying to figure out how to handle that and what it means to the customer."

Barry Ivins, owner and operator of three different bars in Bryan-College Station, says the changes will make transactions more complicated but for his customers, the change will be transparent.

"The prices will pretty much be kept the same," Ivins said. "We're going to scale them back and then we'll add the 8.5 on so it'll be seamless, just an extra line on your receipt."

An extra line on the receipt that hopefully won't keep customers away.

"It wasn't our decision, this is at the state, government level so we just have to make those changes when told to so we hopefully the consumer will accept that," Montalbano said.

The new law began Monday.


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