JOPLIN, MO. Coupon clipping is one way to save a few bucks on a grocery bill. Residents of southeast Kansas have discovered another driving across the border into Missouri to buy their food.
Missouri exempts 3 cents of the total 4.225-cent state sales tax on food purchased in grocery stores, while Kansas shoppers pay the full sales tax on all food. The exemption and the difference in state sales tax rates add up to a savings of $4.07 on a $100 grocery bill.
City and county sales taxes still apply in both states, and the exemption does not apply to nonfood purchases at grocery stores. Missouri has had the exemption since 1997. Kansas is one of 10 states that tax food at the same rate as other items.
Kansas State Rep. Doug Gatewood, D-Columbus, said a measure to eliminate the sales tax on food in grocery stores has been introduced three of the past four years, failing each time.