Mystic (WTNH) - The Cash for Clunkers program struck a chord with millionsof Americans who were looking a grab a great deal. But some mayhave paid too much in taxes.
Susan Ponder said she overpaid sales tax on her new Chevy Aveo;a car she bought through the program.
"I was very frustrated by it," she said.
Frustrated because Ponder said she didn't get any help from Valenti Chevrolet in Mystic after she found out shewas only supposed to pay tax on the price of the car minus the$4,500 she got for her clunker.
"My constituent was clearly overcharged in her sales tax," saidState Rep. Melissa Olson of Norwich.
Rep. Olson contacted the Department of Revenue Services who contactedValenti; the next day Ponder had a check for $270.
"When the program first came out it was unclear from the statewhether we should treat it as a sales tax credit on a trade in orif it was just a voucher from the government," said Rob Valenti of Valenti Chevrolet.
Valenti later learned to treat it as a trade in so the value ofthe clunker was supposed to be subtracted before tax wasdetermined. He says anyone else overcharged was refunded.
Dealerships don't make any money on this mistake; that moneysimply went to the state as sales tax. But it could cost consumersmore and the state said they're the ones who are going to have tomake sure they only paid what they were supposed to.
"How many other people got charged this tax when theyshouldn't have?" asked Ponder.
Ponder is Counting on 8 because, she said, "it does get results.I've seen you do it quite often; I just want people to know that ifthey paid tax on that $4,500 they should get reimbursed for thattax money."
And, at six percent, it certainly does add up.
"[And] $270 is a lot of money; we're retired, we're on socialsecurity," Ponder said.
She's hoping others will check their receipts.
Meanwhile, the state says if you believe you overpaid sales taxon your cash for clunkers purchase, contact the dealer for arefund.
The state is not going to track this so it will be up to youto find out for yourself.
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