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Old 10-26-2007, 07:36 AM
 
6,764 posts, read 19,717,157 times
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How can the state mandate WHERE you purchase items, especially one as small and unpopulated as Vermont? IF I had a supermarket in my town, I'd use it, but we don't. We have the ye old local deli stocking nice (but not a full food shopping worth) of products. If I had a WALMART or some other 'all purpose store' in my town, I'd go there.

But this is not 'store' country. People don't have stores here, so we have to go over to West Lebanon.

I don't see how the same people trying to keep Vermont 'rural' and pristine can expect you to 'shop locally' when there is no where to shop.

Someone explain this to me and how they can 'charge you' (expect tax) when you don't have a choice.

Is the state going supplement my gas and time and $ difference when I go looking around all day for 'farmer's markets' to shop at?

Upper Valley folks, can you weigh in on this? (and others).
I am confused.
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Old 10-26-2007, 09:12 AM
 
Location: Somewhere in northern Alabama
17,743 posts, read 53,880,773 times
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In times past, Vermonters didn't buy a whole lot. What was bought was generally staples such as milk, bread, eggs (by folks who lived in towns) and clothing. Anything unusual was ordered by the local hardware or clothing store, or ordered from Sears or Monkey Ward. This was all before sales tax and consumerism.

Use tax is important to small states like Vermont, and those that depend on sales tax revenues, primarily because we have become a nation of consumers that think nothing of buying the latest gee-gaw simply because of good marketing.

Supporting local business is only possible when there is local business, and high sales tax compared to New Hampshire reduces the incentive for people to even try to start up businesses along the border. The effects of such taxation policies obviously impact not only the local economy but the look and feel of the area. Such is Vermont in a market economy.

Most folks in Vermont do what they have to to survive, and don't have a lot of angst over shopping out-of-state, usually with cash.
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Old 10-26-2007, 11:32 AM
 
Location: hinesburg, vt
1,574 posts, read 4,415,020 times
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I understand fully the frustration of having limited shopping opportunities, especially for staples such as groceries, clothing, automotive, household items. However, it is not the governments obligation or responsibility to provide for consumer conveinience and the state has the legislative legal authority to levy and collect sales and use taxes regardless of the origin of goods purchased. Bottom line, if you are a resident of Vermont you are legally obligated to pay sales/use tax on items you buy in NH or order via internet or mail. It does not seem fair to most and hence I venture to say that very few people actually do accurately tally their purchases and pay the difference. Of course taxes vary from state to state. For example when you move to Vt and bring your vehicle(s) you will owe sales tax on the book value of the vehicle if you originally paid less than VT 6% sales tax. However, after this in Vt you will not have to pay an annual personal property tax on the vehicle based on value as you would in many other states and in Vt your vehicle registration fee is a flat fee based on type of vehicle, not value or age.
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Old 10-26-2007, 04:20 PM
 
Location: on a dirt road in Waitsfield,Vermont
2,186 posts, read 5,980,359 times
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I think it does depend on where you live. Many small towns in Vermont have pretty well stocked general stores but items do cost abit more than at a Shaws or Hanafords.

If you have a family I can see where shopping at a big store is the only way to go. There are also several places you can buy local stuff, again it depends on where you live.

Many towns have local food coops or health food stores that have alot of local stuff. There is nice one just up the road from you in South Royalton but it's definately a longer drive than shooting down I89 to West Leb. and it's more expensive but I like knowing where my produce comes from and supporting the local farms so I shop there when I'm hanging out in Chelsea.

Several towns along Rt 5 over the years fought off Walmart only to have them built across the river. I think the last figure I have seen is that Vermont loses 100m per year in sales tax by Vermonters going to NH.
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Old 10-26-2007, 04:33 PM
 
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We actually have a nice co-op in WRJ but I can't afford to shop for much there. My husband had to drag me out of the place (for anyone unfamiliar with a co-op, it's like a high end health food store.). I bought some herbs there but when soy milk is $2.50 there and $1.69 at Price Chopper(store brand which my husband and son prefer) which do you think I am buying?

Our town is 'strictly for tourists' so there is 'no general store'--just a deli on the green. There is another store (again tourist 'stuff') on 4 but no where to shop. I suppose Woodstock (going West) might have market but I don't go to Woodstock.

I am also not impressed with the other market 'nearby' in WRJ--it reminds me of the stores they have in 'depressed' areas (high prices, poor produce).

So, yeah, we'll shop in W. Leb or whatever, like everyone else around here does.
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Old 10-27-2007, 02:17 AM
 
Location: Winter Springs, FL
1,789 posts, read 4,056,514 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GypsySoul22 View Post
We actually have a nice co-op in WRJ but I can't afford to shop for much there. My husband had to drag me out of the place (for anyone unfamiliar with a co-op, it's like a high end health food store.). I bought some herbs there but when soy milk is $2.50 there and $1.69 at Price Chopper(store brand which my husband and son prefer) which do you think I am buying?

Our town is 'strictly for tourists' so there is 'no general store'--just a deli on the green. There is another store (again tourist 'stuff') on 4 but no where to shop. I suppose Woodstock (going West) might have market but I don't go to Woodstock.

I am also not impressed with the other market 'nearby' in WRJ--it reminds me of the stores they have in 'depressed' areas (high prices, poor produce).

So, yeah, we'll shop in W. Leb or whatever, like everyone else around here does.
When I first moved to Vermont I would drive half an hour to West Leb to do all our shopping. Money for me was tight at the time and there was no way I was going to spend twice as much at the co-op. It was much cheaper to drive that distance than shop locally. You may find that the grocery stores also support and buy from local farmers as well. At least they do near where I'm living and a fair portion of it is organic as well.
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Old 10-27-2007, 09:27 AM
 
Location: Western views of Mansfield/Camels Hump!
1,941 posts, read 3,227,464 times
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Gypsy, if memory serves you are vegetarian, if so, you might consider joining a CSA come spring...you'll pay money up front, but it will be considerably cheaper than buying fresh organic veggies from the market...plus it supports local farmers. I pay $500 in February, and that gets me fresh picked organic produce every week from the end of May til the end of November...it's a considerable amount of produce as well, especially once summer hits - we actually split our share with my aunt as it's too much for just us.

The season might be shorter in VT, but it's well worth it.
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Old 10-27-2007, 04:37 PM
 
1,643 posts, read 2,102,086 times
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We do almost all our shopping in West Leb (It's on the way home) or Claremont (on the weekends.) We live in Windsor VT but work in Norwich VT (me) and Hanover NH(wifey).

There is a spot on your VT state tax form where you can pay a small fee to effectively "reimburse" VT for unpaid sales tax on things you bought out of state. My tax preparer (in WRJ) explained it this way.. "You are, in theory, supposed to send the state of VT 6% sales tax on applicable items bought in NH. Obviously no one odes this so VT has started auditing people and they can get your CC records and such and find out you bought that new Washer Dryer in Tax Free NH. This fee ($30ish iirc) basically takes you off the audit list."

Now that is verbatim but it seemed a small price to pay.

For what it's worth, food is not taxable in VT unless it's prepared food so if you do your grocery shopping in West Leb you don't have to feel guilty.

The P&C in WRJ is ok, a bit dark but fine in a pinch, we generally shop at the big "new" Price Chopper in WL though.

Hope that helps, I'm going to go download the tax form PDF and see if I can find exactly what that was and what the state calls it.
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Old 10-27-2007, 04:45 PM
 
1,643 posts, read 2,102,086 times
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Line 27, a USE TAX adjustment, your tax preparer can help you through that. Ihighly suggest you use a professional preparer your first year in the state at least. We've used "American Financial" in WRJ for years but our long time preparer moved away and we weren't thrilled with our new person. She was perfectly on the ball and all, just not the old familiar we were used to.

Honestly gypsy, don't sweat the tax stuff. Every state is all blustery and loud "demanding" people buy in state but when it comes right down to it, they do little to nothing to enforce it and NO state can tell you how and where to spend your money, that is downright unconstitutional.
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Old 10-27-2007, 06:25 PM
 
Location: on a dirt road in Waitsfield,Vermont
2,186 posts, read 5,980,359 times
Reputation: 1125
As of last spring no sales tax on clothes in Vermont.
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