A sales tax was first instituted in 1935. It was intended to generate revenue for the state during the Great Depression. The tax back then was 2 cents on the dollar. It didn’t last long, though. The 1937 Idaho Legislature repealed the tax, which was roundly reviled by consumers and businesses alike.
When the Legislature brought the tax back in 1965, they set the rate at 3 percent. By then, it was a little easier to collect and report tax revenue for businesses. Today, with electronic transactions and reporting, it’s even less of a burden for businesses. The public has largely accepted the sales tax, though there are frequent grumblings about exemptions that shouldn’t be exemptions and collecting the tax on groceries.
Reviled or not, the sales tax has gone up and down since 1965. It’s currently 6 cents on the dollar. The good news: this blog comes to you completely tax-free.