Local sales taxes in Minnesota are adding up

Collections of add-on sales taxes by Minnesota cities, counties and other special districts have grown almost four-fold in the last decade, according to updated statistics released Thursday by the state Department of Revenue..

The amount of money scooped up by local sales taxes hit $457 million last year. That's up from about $122 million in 2006. The Minnesota Department of Revenue carefully track the sales tax revenue and issues regular reports showing the trends.

Minnesota has a general sales tax rate of 6.875 percent, but many jurisdictions have won permission to layer additional taxes on top of that to pay for local projects. The extra taxes can be as small as .15 percent to one percent.

Many places have lodging, liquor, entertainment or vehicle excise taxes in addition to their general use taxes.

Some of the most rapid growth in local sales taxes over the past decade involves revenue dedicated to mass transit services; those taxes weren't imposed until 2008 or later. The county-imposed and metro-area sales taxes devoted to transit raised just shy of $193 million last year.

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