A mid-year comparison of state and local combined sales tax rates in cities larger than 200,000 residents highlights Tacoma and Seattle, but even that didn’t note that local rates have gone up further since.
Only six other cities had higher percentage rates for retail sales taxes than the 9.6% collected in South and Central Puget Sound earlier this year, according to Tax Foundation.
However, Washington state’s Department of Revenue shows Tacoma and Seattle within Sound Transit’s taxing district both saw their combined sales tax rates bounced up to 10.1% on April 1, 2017.
Measuring that current rate against the table prepared by the national group, only Long Beach, Calif., and Chicago have higher sales tax rates, both at 10.25%.
The Tax Foundation analysis notes that “Sales tax avoidance is most likely to occur in areas where there is a significant difference between two jurisdictions’ sales tax rates. Research indicates that consumers can and do leave high-tax areas to make major purchases in low-tax areas, such as from cities to suburbs.”
Crossing state borders to avoid paying sales taxes is another factor to consider with Oregon have no such levy, but a larger state income tax.