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Firm Getting $16M Tax Refund In Ohio

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Aug. 11 (UPI) — Ohio and 11 counties have received what one official called “an unpleasant surprise” — an order to repay $16 million in use taxes collected illegally.

The money was collected from a single company, which has not been identified, The Columbus (Ohio) Dispatch reported. The state is to repay $12 million and 11 Ohio counties a total of $4 million, with the amounts depending on how much was collected.

“It was a very unpleasant surprise, that’s for sure,” Pickaway County Commissioner Glenn Reeser said Wednesday. “That represents about 2 1/2 percent of our total general-fund budget.”

The state and counties in Ohio collect use taxes instead of sales taxes on items used in the state that were not subject to state sales tax, generally because they were purchased elsewhere.

The newspaper suggested the company involved might be Kinder Morgan, a Houston-based firm that built the Rockies Express Pipeline-East across Ohio. The counties named in the case lie along the pipeline’s route, but a Kinder Morgan spokesman would not confirm it was involved.

Ohio’s tax law includes a use tax exemption for activities involving the production of natural gas.

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