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Georgia State and Local Tax (SALT) Alerts

State and Local Tax Insights

Georgia State and Local Tax Alerts – March 2020

  • The Georgia Dept. of Revenue is encouraging taxpayers to use its online services due to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. The department offers a number of motor vehicle services (https://bit.ly/2wZPB1t) and tax related services (https://bit.ly/39Y55l4) online, without the need for in-person interactions.
  • In accordance with Georgia Governor Brian Kemp’s recommendations in response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Georgia Dept. of Labor is providing online access to unemployment services, partial claim access for employers and other reemployment services. The department is advising that due to an extremely high volume of unemployment claims filed as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, individuals may experience a delay in requesting weekly benefit payments. Please note that you can file a claim online 24 hours per day. For more information: https://bit.ly/2wnhgJZ
  • Due to concerns regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the Georgia Dept. of Revenue is temporarily suspending all in-person services. Georgia taxpayers can conduct all business with the department via online services, telephone or designated secure lockbox locations. For more information visit the department’s website at https://bit.ly/3agpGkK.
  • The Georgia Dept. of Revenue has issued a table showing the local sales and use tax rates for energy sold to manufacturers for the second quarter beginning April 1, 2020. The tax rates are imposed for energy sold to manufacturers as levied by counties within the 159 special districts and the City of Atlanta. Download the table here: https://bit.ly/3axySkP
  • Georgia plans another state income tax rate cut. If passed, it’ll be the second rate cut since 2018. House Speaker David Ralston said the measure would cut the state income tax rate to 5.375%. Calling the measure a “comprehensive income tax reform plan,” Ralston said the rate cut would save taxpayers about $250 million a year. He also stated that the rate cut would eliminate the current graduated tax rate system.
  • Georgia’s net tax collections increased 4.2% in February. The state’s net tax collections for February totaled roughly $1.35 billion, for an increase of $54.9 million, compared to February 2019, when net tax collections totaled $1.30 billion. Year-to-date, net tax collections totaled $15.56 billion, for an increase of $187.9 million, or 1.2%.
  • Beginning April 1, 2020, Georgia state law will define a marketplace facilitator as a dealer that must collect the state’s sales and use tax if it makes at least $100,000 in Georgia taxable sales. The state has provided a more detailed definition of a marketplace facilitator and a marketplace seller. A facilitator is a person who contracts with a seller to make available a taxable retail sale on behalf of the seller including, but not limited to, promoting, marketing, advertising, or taking orders or reservations. A seller is a person who conducts a retail sale through any physical or electronic marketplace or platform operated by a marketplace facilitator.
  • Have you received a letter from the Georgia Dept. of Revenue? Most of the letters the department sends include specific instructions of what you need to do. For example, a letter may ask you to log in to the Georgia Tax Center and follow the directions provided or inform you that your vehicle registration is suspended or will be suspended soon. The letter will tell you what you need to do to legally drive your vehicle. The department stresses that you’ll never be asked to purchase and pay debts with a prepaid debit card, transfer money to a specific account, or threaten you with arrest if you don’t immediately pay an overdue tax debt.

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