An Oildale Walmart outside of the Bakersfield city limits is charging customers a higher-than-allowed sales tax rate, according to a KGET 17 News investigation. A follow up KGET investigation Friday found that at least one other businesses is overcharging customers. Now, the county Supervisor who oversees the area is weighing in.
City taxpayers voted to approve Measure N, a one cent sales tax last November. After it passed, the city’s sales tax increased from 7.25 percent to 8.25 percent.
County voters rejected a nearly identical tax, which is why the county rate is still 7.25 percent.
The Walmart in question is outside Bakersfield city limits, according to a map on the city’s website, and therefore should not have been charging the 8.25 percent sales tax rate.
At the Jack in the Box across the parking lot from Walmart, we purchased a sprite and a grilled cheese for a price of $3.48 before tax. We found the fast food chain was charging the 8.25 percent sales tax rate.
But at the Del Taco nextdoor, the county sales tax rate of 7.25 percent was applied; the restaurant charged a 22 cent sales tax on a $2.98 charge for two tacos.
3rd District Supervisor Mike Maggard, who represents Oildale, weighed in on the issue.
“County voters spoke loud and clear about not raising the county local sales tax,” Maggard said in a statement. “There should be no confusion about what jurisdiction and corresponding sales taxes apply,” he continued.
Customers who believe they are being overtaxed can call the California Department of Fee and Administration hotline at 1-888-334-3300.
*KGET has not yet responded to KGET’s request for comment.