Precious Metals

Good news for Alabama coin collectors

Starting June 1, coin purchases (such as this American Buffalo gold bullion coin) will be exempt from sales and use tax in Alabama.

Original images courtesy of U.S. Mint.

Alabama numismatists and coin businesses are likely elated this week after a sales-and-use tax exemption on U.S. coins and currency and precious-metals bullion sales was signed into law. 

Alabama became the 37th state with this exemption as Gov. Kay Ivey signed Senate Bill 156 on March 6.

According to the Industry Council for Tangible Assets, the new law exempts proceeds from the sale of gold, silver, platinum and palladium bullion, and money, from sales and use tax for five years. The law goes into effect June 1.

This achievement has been in the works since the summer of 2016, when Phil Darby of J&P Coins and Currency (Helena, Ala.), Steve Caiola of Alabama Gold Refinery, and ICTA representatives joined forces. Darby and Caiola hired Graham Champion of Public Strategies, based in Montgomery, Alabama, as the campaign’s lobbyist.

The first iteration of the legislation died in the House in May 2017, but the team didn’t stop. Champion gained Rep. Ron Johnson’s support for the bill, who, along with the bill’s author, Sen. Tim Melson, pushed it through, according to ICTA.

“We promoted the sales-tax exemption as a legitimate jobs and economic-development issue with the legislators,” Champion said in an ICTA release. “We were pleased with the unanimous support of our legislation in both houses, recognizing the benefits to the state’s revenue, to in-state businesses, and to in-state investors and collectors from eliminating the sales tax.”

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According to ICTA, this change means Alabama is now eligible to host a national coin show. Show promoters tend to avoid conducting shows and convention in states where coins and bullion items are subjected to sales taxes.

“We have discussed the possibility of hosting a show in Alabama, however, we have been reluctant because of the sales-tax obstacle,” said Mary Burleson, president of Whitman Publishing. “The new law allows us to once again give serious consideration to hosting a successful show in Alabama.”

Whitman Publishing’s Coin & Collectibles Expo conducts coin shows, including the Whitman Baltimore Expo.

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