Seeking more sportsmen hunting, tax holiday proposed

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(The Center Square) – Seeking more sportsmen hunting, a tax holiday for shoppers looking to buy firearms and ammunition is being proposed in Georgia.

State Sen. Jason Anavitarte, R-Dallas, has proposed a “Second Amendment Tax Holiday Act.” It would eliminate sales tax on firearms, ammunition and related accessories for 11 days, starting on the Friday a week before whitetail deer season begins.

According to a news release, sportsmen are responsible for $106 million in state and local taxes, a funding source for wildlife and habitat restoration projects.

“By carving out a small window in this tax revenue, we hope to expand the base of hunters and increase the overall tax revenue that is dedicated to conservation,” Anavitarte said in an announcement.

The proposal drew praise from a Georgia group in favor of gun rights.

“We are supportive of Senator Anavitarte’s legislation to establish a sales tax holiday on firearms, ammunition, and related accessories as it reduces the financial burden that could prohibit some Georgians from exercising their Second Amendment Rights,” Jerry Henry, executive director of GA2A, told The Center Square via email. “We appreciate Senator Anavitarte’s long-standing commitment to protecting and promoting gun rights in Georgia.”

Senate Majority Leader Steve Gooch, R-Dahlonega, told The Center Square tax holidays such as the back-to-school tax holiday have benefits.

“We allowed our students and kids to go shopping, and that particular day was exempt from sales tax,” Gooch said. “That was a good way to incentivize parents to get their shopping done early, get their kids ready for school and get everybody back in the mood. I don’t think it had a big impact on the state budgets or the local budgets.

“Every time you have an exemption here, you affect the bottom line somewhere. So you have to adjust that in your budget projections, and you either adjust your expenses up or down accordingly.”

When asked if he would support the proposed “Second Amendment Tax Holiday Act,” Gooch said he would be “happy to look at that.”

“We have too many taxes on hardworking Georgians as it is,” Gooch said. “So anytime we can give money back to the hardworking taxpayers of Georgia, I’m in favor of it.”

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