HARTFORD, CT (WFSB) -- The cost of eating out and several items at the grocery store is going up after Oct. 1.
The restaurant tax is going from 6.35 percent to 7.35 percent.
Will you steer clear from these items on shopping trips after Oct. 1? To vote in our poll, CLICK HERE.
Will you steer clear from these items on shopping trips after Oct. 1?
Starting Oct. 1, shoppers will potentially be paying more at the grocery store. The restaurant tax is going from 6.35 percent to 7.35 percent, which impacts many prepared foods, bakery items, and more.
Originally, Gov. Ned Lamont's plan was to tax nearly all grocery items. However, he then agreed to scale back on that after heavy opposition.
The governor's staff said the extra revenue will generate more than $65 million a year, and that other states like Rhode Island and Massachusetts and 13 others have similar taxes.
Democrats in both chambers are saying that the tax is being stretched too far.
"It's outrageously confusing, number one, and number two, it would be very difficult for stores to follow," said Rep. Liz Linehan.
Senate Democrats sent a letter to the Department of Revenues Services Commissioner Scott Jackson on Monday accusing his agency of redefining what is considered a prepared food.
In their letters, Senate Democrats said, "We were shocked to see that DRS has somehow interpreted the language in the budget to significantly broaden the base on what meals and beverages would be covered by the sales tax. This interpretation goes against the legislative intent of the new law and against the interpretation of the new law by all three of our nonpartisan offices."
Owners of stores across the station are questioning why this tax will apply to certain items, like a five ounce bag of lettuce, but not larger bags of the same item.
"I'm concerned that this package of coleslaw is not taxable, yet this one is. It's going to be tough," said Daniel D'Aprile, owner of D&D Market.
The Department of Revenue Services recently broke down specifics of what’s included in the tax increase.
Taxable meals include:
• All food and beverages sold for human consumption at the seller’s location
• Food products ordinarily sold in such form and portions that are ready for immediate consumption at or near the location of the seller. This includes prepared foods, prepackaged foods, hot foods, and foods heated on the premises for the purchaser.
• A meal may be a full dinner or it may be a single item. Meals are subject to sales and use taxes whether they are served at the location of the seller, delivered to the purchaser’s location, or sold on a takeout basis.
Examples of Taxable Meals: Food for immediate consumption constituting taxable meals includes, but is not limited to:
• Sandwiches, grinders, and wraps
• Popsicles, ice cream cones, cups, sundaes, and other individual servings of frozen desserts unless sold in factory prepackaged multi-unit packs
• Ice cream, frozen yogurt, and other frozen desserts sold in containers of less than one pint
• Salads sold at salad bars
• Lettuce or greens-based salads sold in containers of 8 ounces or less
• Salads that are not greens-based (macaroni, potato, pasta, fruit, etc.) sold in containers of 8 ounces or less
• Donuts, muffins, rolls, bagels, and pastries (5 or fewer)
• Cookies sold loose (5 or fewer when cookies are sold by quantity, or less than 8 ounces when cookies are sold by weight)
• Pies or cakes by the slice
• Prepackaged or factory-sealed bags or packages of 5 ounces or less of chips, popcorn, kettle corn, nuts, trail mix, crackers, cookies, snack cakes, or other snack foods, unless sold in factory prepackaged multi-unit packs
• Pizza, whole or by the slice
• Cooked chicken sold by the piece, including buckets of chicken, and whole cooked chickens
• Cooked ribs sold by the piece or portion and whole racks of ribs
• Hot dogs served on a bun or heated
• Bagels that are individually prepared
• Soup sold in containers of 8 ounces or less, unless sold in factory prepackaged units
• Meal replacement bars
• All beverages provided with the sale of a taxable meal
• Food sold at a hot buffet
• Food that is cooked to order
• Popcorn, kettle corn, nuts and any other snack foods that are kept warm for purchase
• Items such as salads, side dishes, and rolls, when sold as part of family pack meals typically including, whole chickens or buckets of chicken, when prepared and sold for immediate consumption, even when the items exceed the weight or quantity limits specified above.
• Beer, including nonalcoholic beer
• Fruit juices, sweetened beverages, soft drinks, and soda
• Carbonated water
• Coffee or tea (ready to consume, hot or iced)
• Distilled alcohol such as brandy, rum, whiskey, gin, vodka, and tequila
• Fountain drinks of any kind
• Hard cider
• Kombucha tea, and other naturally carbonated beverages
• Malt liquor
• Hot chocolate
• Syrup-flavored crushed ice drinks