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Colorado bill to exempt farm repair parts

DENVER – The President of the Denver-based Rocky Mountain Farmers Union (RMFU) today hailed final passage of Colorado legislation eliminating state sales tax on repair parts for farm machinery and equipment as a major boost for the state’s ailing agricultural economy.

“Colorado lawmakers today provided a tangible shot in the arm for the farmers and ranchers of our state,” said Dave Carter, RMFU President. “This legislation gives a break to the one segment of our state that has been largely bypassed by the ongoing economic boom.”

The legislation, HB 1162, emerging from the closing days of the 2000 session exempts all farm machinery and equipment repair parts from Colorado sales tax. The bill also eliminates the sales tax on equipment used in agricultural aerial application services. Rep. Kay Alexander, R-Montrose, and Sen. Marilyn Musgrave, R-Fort Morgan sponsored the bill.

Carter commended Rep. Alexander and Sen. Musgrave for “finishing the job that the legislature started last year when it lifted the sales tax on all new farm machinery and equipment.”

Jan Kochis, a Matheson, Colorado wheat farmer who serves on the RMFU Board of Directors, said this year’s package would provide even greater help for most farmers and ranchers than the legislation approved in 1998. “With today’s dismal crop and livestock prices, few agricultural producers are buying new equipment. We’re simply trying to survive by keeping our existing equipment and machinery patched together. This legislation will be a real help for producers who are fighting to keep the red ink off the bottom line.”

Governor Bill Owens is expected to sign the legislation soon.