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Sales tax holiday for back-to-school supplies announced for August

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RICHMOND, Va. – Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe announced Thursday the state will offer a sales tax holiday for back-to-school items in August.

During the sales tax holiday shoppers are encouraged to buy back-to-school items and take necessary precautions during hurricane season without paying state and local sales tax.

The tax free shopping days will be held from August 5-7 for qualifying school supplies, clothing, footwear, and emergency preparedness items.

The holiday is aimed to financially assist families.

“This sales tax holiday will make items that help families prepare for the school year or for a potential emergency more affordable,” said Governor McAuliffe. “This tax-free weekend is integrally important in ensuring all students and families have the tools and resources they need to be able to thrive and prosper here in Virginia.”

Online purchases of qualifying products are exempt from the sales tax as long as orders are placed and paid for during the August 5-7 exemption period and the sellers have the items available for immediate shipment.

All retailers who sell the exempt products are required to participate in the sales tax holiday.

Tax exempt items include:

  • Most school and office supplies, such as pens, loose-leaf paper, scissors, binders, backpacks, and construction paper, priced at $20 or less.
  • Clothing and footwear, priced at $100 or less per item or pair.
  • Batteries, flashlights, bottled water, tarps, duct tape, fire extinguishers, cell-phone chargers, smoke detectors, buckets, rope, and first aid kits, priced at $60 or less.
  • Gas-powered chainsaws, priced at $350 or less, and chainsaw accessories, priced at $60 or less.
  • Portable generators, priced at $1,000 or less.
  • Energy Star-labeled dishwashers, washing machines, air conditioners, ceiling fans, light bulbs, dehumidifiers, and refrigerators, priced at $2,500 or less.
  • WaterSense-labeled sink faucets, faucet accessories, aerators, shower heads, toilets, urinals, and landscape irrigation controllers, priced at $2,500 or less.