Va. Senate panel OKs tax break for bullion buyers

STATE-NEWSRICHMOND, Va. (AP) _ A Virginia Senate committee is proposing to exempt gold, silver and platinum bullion from the state sales tax. The exemption would apply to transactions exceeding $1,000. The Finance Committee’s endorsement of Sen. Frank Wagner’s measure Wednesday now goes to the full Senate. Wagner, a Virginia Beach Republican, says bullion buyers are taking their business outside Virginia to states that don’t tax precious metals. The state Department of Taxation estimates that the measure could reduce state revenues by as much as $313,000 a year. Similar exemptions are offered by 31 states. While endorsing one new tax break, the committee proposed repealing an existing one: an income tax credit for political contributions. The repeal bill offered by Sen. Chap Petersen, a Fairfax Democrat, would raise an estimated $680,000 a year in revenue.

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