Measure U is a local transactions and use tax within the City of Santa Maria. City voters initially approved Measure U in the June 2012 election (63.95 percent support), enacting a one-quarter-cent general transactions and use tax. More recently, City voters in the November 2018 election (with a 74.18 percent majority) extended and enhanced Measure U at the one-cent rate, to support essential City services.
The tax is imposed upon all retailers within the incorporated City Limits (City Limits Map) (Interactive City Limits Map). The tax applies to gross receipts from any retailers from the sale of tangible property sold at retail within the City. Santa Maria residents do not shoulder the entire cost because the tax also is paid by all visitors who make purchases on taxable goods.
The tax changed from 0.25 percent to 1.00 percent effective April 1, 2019 (City Attorney's Analysis).
Retailers were reminded to adjust their point of sale systems (cashiering equipment) in time for April 1, 2019.
The City’s overall sales tax rate increased from 8.00 percent to 8.75 percent. This will not be the highest sales tax in the County (Carpinteria’s will be 9.0 percent).
All retailers need to collect the enhanced tax rate from customers and then report it properly and in timely fashion to the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (formerly the Board of Equalization).
City of Santa Maria – Sales Tax Update (from 2012)