Sales tax exemption lawsuit heard by SC high court

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COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) — The South Carolina Supreme Court is considering arguments in a case that could end the state's 78 sales tax exemptions.

Attorneys for Matthew Bodman of Columbia told the justices Tuesday that the exemptions are illegal because they are special legislation that favors only certain entities and are tacked onto a law that is supposed to fund education.

Attorney Cam Lewis argued the state loses more in exemptions each year than it collects in sales taxes. The exemptions amount to $2.7 billion on items like prescription drugs, power bills, groceries and even portable toilet rentals.

But attorneys for the state argued the Legislature acted properly in approving such exemptions. They say the case is a political maneuver and not a legal matter for the high court to decide.

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