NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Amid surging inflation, Tennesseans are paying a 4 percent tax for groceries in addition to tax added by local jurisdictions. Now, state lawmakers are considering ways to not only temporarily suspend that tax, but the gas tax as well.
News 2 asked Nashvillians how they ae=re coping with the surge of gas and groceries.
“It’s just a real heartache,” said Ron Mitchell, who has lived in the North Nashville area all his life. “I struggle. I feel sorry for those that have a greater struggle than I do.”
“It’s a lot,” said LaTanya L. Rogers. “It seems like it’s gone up at least 10-15 percent over the last couple years.”
“I think that’s really wonderful,” said Rogers. “Any help we get for families makes a big difference. And to bring the grocery bill down, especially for those of us raising children, it helps.”
The suspension would only apply to food. Things like paper towels and detergent would not be included.
Thursday, Anthony Soares was seen stocking up on toilet paper at a neighborhood Kroger.
“Usually I get a little discount in there from getting some groceries,” said Soares. “But I’ve noticed it’s been a little bit higher lately.”
Representative John Ray Clemmons propsed a similar suspension several months ago which did not pass the legislature.
“I don’t think 30 days is enough. I think he’s trying to book end that, but I’m not going to argue about the time limit,” said Rep. Clemmons. “I would love to see it be longer, but this is all about compromise.”
Rep. Clemmons plans to propose his own legislation that would extend a similar suspension to both grocery and gas taxes.
“House Bill 2826 would suspend the gas and diesel tax in the state of Tennessee for 90 days. It would also suspend the sales tax on food, just like the governor has proposed. It would do so for 90 days. That would get us through the rest of this spring, through the summer and into August, your busiest travel time for families,” said Clemmons. “The State of Tennessee has the money. We have ample resources right now to provide this much needed relief.”
The measure would have to be heard in committee and voted on by the legislature before moving forward.