Vons Mammmoth not charging TBID on food

vonsremodel1Mammoth citizens have noticed the additional 1.5% Tourism Business Improvement District charge on their Mammoth Vons’ bills and some have believed that the tax includes food products. According to Vons corporate headquarters, the tax is not charged on food.

Mammoth Vons Manager Rick Graham said the 1.5% TBID tax does appear on bills but, he said, “We’re charging TBID only on applicable items.” According to Carlos Illingsworth, Director of Vons Public Affairs, the store follows Mammoth’s guidelines which say non-taxable food items for human consumption are exempt from TBID. According to Mammoth Lakes Tourism, Total sales for purposes of calculating TBID assessments in the retail category “shall not include sales from non-taxable food items for human consumption.”

Some local sources told us there are Mammoth residents now shopping at Vons in Bishop to avoid what they believed were TBID assessments on their food. Again, Vons says the tax is not applied to non-taxable food items.


47 Responses to Vons Mammmoth not charging TBID on food

  1. Old Local February 26, 2014 at 12:41 pm #

    I went to Vons in Mammoth this morning (2/26/14) and was charged 1.5% Tourism Assessment. It showed up on my register tape.

    • MK February 27, 2014 at 10:05 am #

      Please look at the bill for your purchase. Vons is not charging TBID on food. None food Items like BEER or Wine, Paper goods YES…

      Beer is not considered food

      If they are bring it too their attention.

    • Desert Tortoise February 27, 2014 at 12:06 pm #

      Just curious, were you charged TBID sales tax increment on food items, or things like toilet paper, cleaners, and other non-food items?

  2. ILoveToFish February 26, 2014 at 12:44 pm #

    I buy everything in bishop now.

    Dog food – Dusty’s Pets (TBID Tax is on dog food in Mammoth)
    Food – Vons, (Not just because of the TBID, but everything is cheaper.)
    Gas – Vons (Gas Points)
    Beers and alcohol – Fart & Smile (smart and Final)

    Everything else – Amazon.com

    • Ken Warner February 26, 2014 at 4:49 pm #

      You mean you are not supporting our local businesses? Them’s fightin’ words.

      Just kidding. I said the same thing a while back and all the pseudonyms got their panties in a bunch.

      I’d drive to Bishop too but for me it’s about a $20 round trip. The TBID is less even though I hate paying Urdi’s salary.

      • ILoveToFish February 26, 2014 at 5:54 pm #

        its the principle. I’d rather spend 100.00 in gas to go to Carson City then to pay for my town incompetence. “I’m not shopping local, anymore.”

  3. I'll show you February 26, 2014 at 1:27 pm #

    (Some local sources told us there are Mammoth residents now shopping at Vons in Bishop to avoid what they believed were TBID assessments on their food.)

    That’ll really show those crooks. Shop in Bishop and spend an additional $10.00 in gas. I see allot of Brain Surgeons in this crowd.

    • Benett Kessler February 26, 2014 at 2:15 pm #

      Mammoth people drive to Bishop for other services. Maybe they are combining them with a trip to Vons.

      • Colmparative Shopper February 26, 2014 at 4:54 pm #

        The Von’s in Bishop is much larger than the Von’s in Mammoth. Plus you can try your luck at the Paiute Palace on the way down or on the way back.

      • Wayne Deja February 26, 2014 at 4:58 pm #

        Benett…exactly….Just like some of the towns where a store (or two) charge high prices,and how it hurts the OTHER business’ that try to keep the prices down…when I have to go to Ridgecrest to maybe pick up something ,I “bundle”…maybe not needing groceries at the time,or fishing supplies,dog food,or anything else for 3 or 4 months,but getting them anyway while I’m down there….when some preach to “buy local”,any business that over-charges,thinking they can,what it does is hurt all the business’ in town that try to keep the prices down.

        • Desert Tortoise February 27, 2014 at 12:05 pm #

          Too funny. The Chamber of Commerce and City Council in Ridgecrest are always complaining about sales tax “leakage” to the Antelope Valley as Ridgecrustacians (or is that Crumvillains? Ridgecrest used to be known as Crumville) take their business south where the prices tend to be lower and the selection so much better.

          • Wayne Deja February 27, 2014 at 2:40 pm #

            Desert Tortoise….yeah,but who in their right mind wants to go to Lancaster ?…..and that’s coming from someone that lived there for 31 years.Last time I went there,about 8 years ago,I got lost looking for a house I lived in for 10 of those years….and when I got to a motel to spend the night after the long day,I had hookers knocking on my door at 11 P.M. asking if I wanted some company.

          • Desert Tortoise February 27, 2014 at 8:33 pm #

            I didn’t say live there. I have to go to Palmdale to buy good professional clothing to wear to work. Such clothing is not available anywhere to the north unless you go all the way to Carson City. For good Asian foods I have to go even farther south, to San Gabriel or Rancho Cucamonga. For tires I have to go to Bakersfield. No one in the region has even heard of the brand I buy, a premium all weather tire from Finland that goes by the brand name Nokian. If I need diagnostics on my car, I have to go to Palmdale, no one in the region has the necessary diagnostics tools. For motorcycle tires I end up going all the way to LA. No one that I know of anywhere north of LA installs tires while you wait except the Harley dealer, and that does me no good for my BMWs, so I work a tire change into a trip to LA. That is how it goes. Businesses in the region don’t want to carry the products I want to buy then whine like an old Chevy rear end when you take your business south.

          • Benett Kessler February 27, 2014 at 10:34 pm #

            Wow. BMWs, business trips, ethnic food trips, knowledge about everything under the sun. DT, quite the dude.

          • Mongo The Idiot February 28, 2014 at 12:21 am #

            I get fruit of the month club, does that count?

  4. Still being taxed February 26, 2014 at 2:03 pm #

    Still taxing the locals. No other Vons or safeway does this in the country. If
    I was elected it would be tweeked so local residents don’t pay into it.

    • Benett Kessler February 26, 2014 at 2:12 pm #

      This was not a tax by Vons but by the Mammoth Business Improvement District through retail, restaurants, and lodging plus lift tickets and ski school.

      • Ken Warner February 26, 2014 at 5:07 pm #

        Remember the story about the frog in hot water? I wonder how long it will take for the people of Mammoth Lakes to figure out they are being boiled?

      • Steve February 26, 2014 at 10:54 pm #

        What Business Improvement???? People in Mammoth are going down to Bishop to shop and everywhere else. The TBID is really a “Business Unimproved Tax.”
        I’ve always said no nation has ever taxed itself into prosperity.
        A big Thank You TOML from the people of Bishop.

      • Ken Warner February 27, 2014 at 9:24 am #

        …and I wonder how Chamber of Commerce members can decide to tax the citizenry? Isn’t that just flat out illegal. Nobody voted for the TBID except a few businesses. As I recall, only 68 businesses voted for it.

        It all just doesn’t seem legal and yet the people of Mammoth Lakes just roll over and take it.

      • erik simpson February 27, 2014 at 11:06 am #

        Somebody correct me if I’m misinformed, but wasn’t the decision to impose TBID taxes a choice by businesses to tax themselves? And with the number of ‘votes’ determined by the size of the business? (IOW, MMSA gets lots of votes.)

        Of course, the decision to pass along the new tax to customers is another decision that’s up to individual businesses. Citizens at large didn’t have any say in the matter, and a number of local merchants opposed the TBID, but of course, they were outvoted by the larger proponents.

        BIDs in general are authorized by state law. It seems outrageous, but our elected representatives in the state legislature approved them, so who are we to complain?

        • Benett Kessler February 27, 2014 at 12:58 pm #

          You are right abut the decision to impose TBID.

        • Curious February 28, 2014 at 10:34 am #

          Didn’t the TBID need the majority vote of the town council before it could be “imposed”?

          Boycotting these plutocrats seems like the only solution to me. Money is the only thing these misers are concerned about. Millionaires passing taxes on the working class only happens if you do business in town.

          If you haven’t noticed the only people rolling over are those with no other choice and tourist. Word on the street is Mammoth is a three star resort charging five star prices. Just a matter of time before they implode, again.

          These band aid approaches to the hemorrhaging of underreported incomes and the related taxes by the same tax collectors of the TBID is comedy at its best.

          I think I’ll build an ark because they said the TBID will raise all boats.

    • Desert Tortoise February 27, 2014 at 8:36 pm #

      Not true. All stores charge the appropriate sales tax. Most areas have an additional 1/2 to 1 1/2 percent added to the state’s 7 1/4 percent to pay for local programs. Some regions of the state charge upwards of 9 % sales tax. The state gets their 7 1/4 % and the county or city keeps the remaining 1 3/4 %.

  5. enoughalready February 26, 2014 at 3:42 pm #

    Nice to see Mammoth could afford another “m”. Things must be turning around for them.

  6. no tbid charge for locals February 26, 2014 at 7:58 pm #

    I would set it up like a locals discount. You show ID right from the start to the purchase or sell. Or do a locals card out of the tbid funds (Urdi slush fund) can make the cards. Eventually tbid is not going to last. Mammoth store is already feeling the rebellin from Mammoth residents. Go ask fireball (checker) he’s taking donations to survive!! Yikes It’s only getting worse Depression

  7. upthecreek February 27, 2014 at 12:12 am #

    Mammoth will soon tax itsself into the iceage. Dont think for a second that the visitors dont see all of these extra fees and taxes.
    Govt gone wild

    • sugar magnolia February 27, 2014 at 11:56 am #

      But that would be a good thing….an iceage that is…it beats this climate change crap that is ruining our winters!

      If the solution to dry, warm winters is taxation, then we have a plan!

  8. John Barton February 27, 2014 at 7:25 am #

    I don’y buy anything in Mammoth now. I go to recreate. Before I’d go to ride my bike or hike, buy clothes at Van Huesen/Bass, buy lunch, make my way to Booky Joint for some browsing and inevitably buy a magazine or book. Until that 1.5% goes away I’m only recreating and not buying. This is out of principal and protest to a ridiculous tax.

  9. nancy backerman February 27, 2014 at 12:07 pm #

    As much as I’d like to support local businesses, it’s my hard earned nickel and it doesn’t make financial sense for me to spend more than I need to when I can find the same items for less elsewhere, without going out of my way or spending extra on gas. I’m in Carson/Reno and/or down south at least once a month anyways so I’m not making special trips just to shop.

    Bottom line, even if the TBID eventually goes away, I will continue to buy online, in Carson/Reno when I’m there, down south when I’m there, in Bishop when I’m there, wherever I can find the best price. I work too hard for my income to not carefully monitor how I spend it and…I adamantly oppose the TBID. TBID may have been implemented without the opportunity for the public to express their opinion by being able to vote for or against it, but we still have the option of voicing our opposition to it by shopping elsewhere to avoid paying it.

  10. Sue Hutson February 27, 2014 at 12:12 pm #

    Taxing the tourists and locals in a tourist dependent town that already has high prices? We are just getting dumber every day. When I drive from Independence to Mammoth for hiking this summer, I will be sure to pick up my sandwich in Bishop first.

  11. Wayne Deja February 27, 2014 at 2:30 pm #

    To all the Mammoth people..It’s obvious they don’t care about the residents of your town,only the rich people that come there with their endless supply of $$$ that don’t even notice the xtra tax and/ or don’t mind paying the xtra…simple solution….don’t buy in Mammoth….Bishop is only an hour away…or Reno….only about 2 hours away and a beautiful drive getting there….stop in Walker for lunch,get one of those big “Walker burgers”,go to the picnic area next to the Walker River and enjoy the quiet and the scenery.In case you haven’t noticed,Mammoth is all about the $$$$…..”show me the money”….do you think they care about those that are struggling to make ends meet up there ?….or the rich L.A. people coming up there to drink and party ?

  12. h February 27, 2014 at 6:45 pm #

    I want to know Joe Parrino’s stance on this issue…

  13. Sierra Lady February 27, 2014 at 11:06 pm #

    Being a 31 year resident of Mammoth Lakes I was adamantly opposed to the TBID which is supporting air service and a so-called marketing plan that no one has seen in writing. I educated myself by reading the TBID website (http://mltbid.com/ ) and encourage everyone else to do the same. After the TBID was implemented it only took me shopping at Vons here in town once and seeing the 1.5% “T” behind a non-food item I purchased to change my shopping habits (all food items with an “F” behind it are not TBID taxable).

    I called the managers at both our local RiteAid and DIY to ask if their stores were charging the TBID and was told that their corporate offices were absorbing the cost and NOT passing it along to customers. Ever since then my little way of boycotting the TBID (when I am able) is to make a separate shopping list for all my paper/dry good, over-the-counter items, cleaning supplies, alcohol, greeting cards, etc. and purchase them at RiteAid or DIY. If they don’t have the brands I prefer then I save those items on my list for when we go down to Bishop a couple of times a month to care for a loved one and pick up those items down there.

    FYI: Napa Auto Parts in Mammoth also does not charge the TBID to customers. Since most of their business is local they elected to pay the $500/yr TBID up front.

    B. Richter

  14. sugar magnolia February 28, 2014 at 12:08 pm #

    Shopping at Von’s in Bishop is not the answer. I go there sometimes when I’m down in Bishop for other reasons. They are slower then heck! I don’t know why they can’t talk and scan at the same time, but apparently they can’t. Even their baggers are slow.

    Also, if you to at peak time, five o’clock, they have very long lines and don’t open the express lanes! They expect you to use the self check out instead, which doesn’t work if you are buying alcohol. So I end up waiting in a long line with my 3 items.

    Basically, Mammoth is such a high volume store that they’ve learned how to be friendly and social and kick butt while checking you out too.
    I agree with Sierra Lady, buy your food at vons in mammoth, and pick up non-food items when you’re in Carson City or Reno. Winco foods has some pretty good prices and you don’t need a membership!

    • Trouble March 9, 2014 at 7:27 pm #

      Sugar, be nice to the baggers at Bishops Von’s, our kids can’t afford all the good drugs your kids get.

      • Pedro March 9, 2014 at 8:42 pm #

        Well, that’s mammoth for you, they’d rather drive three hours than spend five minutes having a conversation with someone in Bishop. Why would they support neighbors that might actually ski there when they can help pay for someone’s pass to Heavenly?

  15. Joe Parrino March 9, 2014 at 1:22 pm #

    Hey h, I did post regarding this matter. Sounds like you and I need to meet. I can tell ya more of my plans if I can get the voters to understand my concerns of the down the drain direction Mammoth is heading in.If U watch the last town council meeting you will see I was the only candidate who expressed no raises for council memebers. You would never know 2 other candidates were in suite Z. 1 was sitting in the same row as me and didn’t say a word. If i was elected I would start a fund out my pay for the lower income families who can’t afford to enter all of the family racing events that Mammoth mountain puts on. We have some excellent young athletes who don’t get a chance to show their good talents because parents aren’t working or stuck with low paying jobs.Struggling to keep a roof over their heads and food on the table. Believe it or not mammoth is in the biggest depression ever.I made more money at 18 when I lived here on my own in the late 70’s. Yep I was making 15-20 an hour shoveling snow for kmmt,putting on chains at Rick Devore’s gas station and pulling cars out of the ditches when main street was 1 lane. Has greed taking over? FYI:Over 14 million people in america are struggling were there next meal is coming from while non citizen americans in California are getting all the jobs and benefits. Someone mentioned in another post that the hispanic population is now the majority in Mammoth. I believe it. It really squashed my customer service business. Really h I’m serious about meeting ya face to face? visit mammothmotcross.org for my cell. Promise it won’t be dangerous to your health!!

    • Benett Kessler March 9, 2014 at 2:56 pm #

      So, apparently you won’t be providing any representation for the Hispanic residents of Mammoth Lakes?
      Benett Kessler

    • Reality Check March 9, 2014 at 4:56 pm #

      Joe, please give us a detailed account of you work history over the last 10 yeras in Mammoth and indicate if any of it was full time work and how long it lasted if it was full time. Also include any restraining orders that you have been served.

      What is your present occupation?

      For the record, “couch surfing” is not a job.

      We the voters have a right to know.

      • Trouble March 10, 2014 at 7:21 am #

        I think Joe is correct to say what he believes caused him to lose his business up here. I too believe there are many good jobs that have been ruined due to people who are willing to work for peanuts up here. I just don’t have any desire to put my real name on such comments.

    • Ken Warner March 9, 2014 at 8:40 pm #

      Are you just figuring out that there is a large Hispanic population in Mammoth and that tourism jobs are the worse paying jobs in the U.S? You seem a little late to the party.


    • Pedro March 9, 2014 at 9:32 pm #

      J.P., you better brush up on California history if you’re implying all Hispanics are non citizens, and on your mammoth census facts. http://quickfacts.census.gov/qfd/states/06/0645358.html

      How about we stop work visas for New Zealand ski instructors while we’re at it? They can’t even speak proper American and are taking our jobs. Before we know it we will have Jamaicans scamming visas claiming to want to come here to train for bobsled.

      • Ken Warner March 10, 2014 at 10:50 am #

        I think you are absolutely right about stopping immigration. At least until everybody is working at a good job. Of course, there’s still the problem of illegal immigration. Eleven million illegal immigrants is the current estimate. And they all are not from Mexico. They are from all over the World.

        What are you proposing for illegal immigration???

  16. Joe Parrino March 9, 2014 at 9:23 pm #

    WOW talking about slander? Reality Check Can U show proof of this Restraining Order? And Who is it from? I don’t recall being served for anything. Not even Jury Duty.Now I did want to put a restraining order on certain town employee!Jobs well I like most in Mammoth have had lots of jobs.My first co. was Joe’s lawn/edge service when I was 9 yrs old Yep 20 accounts Made a push cart that held my mower/edger all my tools and pushed it to every customers house.$5 a lawn penny a weed.Did U know I invented many products?wow-wax.
    Over 25 years of Development & Perfection and the only all natural ski & board rub on all temp wax in the world. I been in the ski industry since 20? And taught at MT.Baldy 14 yrs. Was a supervisor. Also a area rep for Volant ski’s I had a skateboard co. called TRIQ I designed old and new school street/pool boards? Oh then my 26yr window cleaning business Joe Window Cleaner. I serviced over 200 accounts down south and had both
    commercial and residential.I and the beautiful Marianne O’connor stepped up to the plate for Steve Searles. We were put through hell to get his job back and Bear Whisper 1 movie deal back in 2008-12. Look for the my little stop sign on dumpsters.To my voters in Mammoth Yes I know how to be successful, very business and customer service minded and no dummy when it comes to budgeting money.The last time I saw slander posts like this Reality Checks, is when Tim Fesko ran for Mono County supervisor the first time. Now he is next in line for Chair for Mono County Supervisor.Remember I’m far from any good ole boy. I don’t hang in bars or pot shops. I’m not out getting arrested,I have a clean slate record and don’t recall why anyone would have to go out there way to ruin my reputation.
    I’m out and about meeting and greeting our guest and being a good Ambassador to make them feel welcomed.My biggest goal is to bring our guest back to stay longer in Mammoth.

    / a Any other slander remarks U want to make I recommend A fact check not Bad Mouths. It just shows some people in our town must see me as good candidate and others look at me as a threat. It just gives me more reason to stay in the race!!

  17. Joe Parrino March 9, 2014 at 9:58 pm #

    Just the facts Benett Kessler Just the facts MAM!! The famous line from Sargent Friday in Dragnet. As a reporter U should be nice not bias towards people U have never met face to face!!

    • Benett Kessler March 10, 2014 at 9:16 am #

      My job description does not include “nice”. It does include fair and inquisitive. So will you answer my question?


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