Texans to save an estimated $90M during Sales Tax Holiday

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Retail stores throughout the East Texas area are preparing for the state’s annual Sales Tax Holiday, to be held Friday through Sunday, Aug. 10-12.

Whether you’re in need of book bags, blackboard chalk or bell-bottom pants, Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar is reminding shoppers they can save money on those and certain other items during the state’s sales tax holiday.

This year, shoppers will save over $90 million in state and local sales taxes during the sales tax holiday, according to the Texas Comptroller’s Office.

The holiday weekend, set by the Texas Legislature, allows consumers to purchase clothing, school supplies, and other items without having to pay the state sales tax. Consumers will save an average of $8.25 per every $100 spent. Sales of qualifying items will be exempt from sales tax on items costing up to $100, or the first $100 of the retail cost.

School supplies qualifying as tax-free must cost under $100 each. The school supplies included in the holiday tax exemption include but are not limited to backpacks, binders, calculators, composition notebooks, crayons, erasers, folders, glue, index cards, lunch boxes, markers, paper, pencils, pens, rulers, and scissors.

Parents with students who are required to use computers, tablets, or mobile devices at school will have to pay more, as these items are not tax exempt.

Many clothing items are tax-free during the weekend, allowing parents to find the right back to school outfit for their children. Clothes exempt from tax this weekend include but are not limited to athletic socks, belts, blouses, caps, coats, dresses, jeans, shoes, shorts, sweaters, T-shirts, and underwear.

There are many other items the tax-free weekend covers, including diapers, baby clothes, hunting vests, pajamas, and swimsuits.

Items excluded from the sales tax holiday include items sold for $100 or more; clothing subscription boxes; specially-designed athletic activity or protective-use clothing or footwear (example: golf cleats and football pads); clothing or footwear rentals, alterations (including embroidery) and cleaning services; items used to make or repair clothing, such as fabric, thread, yarn, buttons, snaps, hooks and zippers; jewelry, handbags, purses, briefcases, luggage, umbrellas, wallets, watches and other accessories; computers; software; and textbooks.

All sales of qualifying items made during the holiday period qualify for the exemption, including items sold online, or by telephone or mail.

Hegar reminds shoppers they can save money on certain items during the state’s annual sales tax holiday.

“As Texas families begin the process of replacing their beach bags with book bags, Texas’ sales tax holiday is the perfect opportunity to save some money on the supplies families need before the school bell rings,” Hegar said. “As a dad to three young children, I know how these expenses can add up.”

The sales tax exemption applies only to qualifying items you buy during the sales tax holiday. Items you buy before or after the sales tax holiday do not qualify for exemption, and there is no tax refund available.

The tax holiday weekend has been an annual event since 1999. Lists of apparel and school supplies that may be purchased tax-free can be found on the Comptroller’s website, www.TexasTaxHoliday.org.

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