Last week at my other tax blog: FSAs ignored; IRS payment plan problems
What a wonderful financial weekend

Rhode Island now collecting more sales taxes, but not on marijuana dispensaries

Rhode Island shoppers on Saturday, Oct. 1, discovered that over-the-counter drugs, some computer software, smartphone apps and sightseeing tours cost more.

That's because effective yesterday the Ocean State's 7 percent sales tax now applies to those items.

The newly taxable items are projected to bring the state an additional $17 million. And that added revenue is this week's By the Numbers figure.

17 million RI new sales tax revenue 10-01-11

However, the state will forgo one tax.

Gov. Lincoln Chafee has decided not to issue state licenses to marijuana dispensaries although a new tax on the facilities is estimated to generate almost $700,000.

The governor's decision came after the U.S. Attorney for Rhode Island threatened to order raids and prosecute operators if the dispensaries opened. But the tax will remain on the books.

There's also grumbling about the tourism tax.

Some say the levy is unfair since it isn't applied to some trips to Canada and New York that originate in the Ocean State but don't have official stops there. A group of lawmakers plans to work on repealing the tour tax.

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