Florida sales tax exemption for school supplies begins Monday

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As summer vacation draws to a close and students prepare for the school year, a back-to-school tax “holiday” on items such as clothing and school supplies is set to begin on Monday.

Sales tax exemptions on school-related purchases will continue through August 7. The holiday, which has become something of an annual event, was part of a larger $800 million tax package Governor Ron DeSantis signed into law in May. The package also included tax breaks on items such as hurricane supplies, outdoor gear, diapers, children’s clothing and books.

During the back-to-school holidays, most school supplies costing $50 or less will be exempt from sales tax.

The party will also apply to clothing, shoes and accessories sold for $100 or less and learning aids and puzzles that cost $30 or less. Sales taxes will also not be collected on certain big ticket items, such as personal computers sold for $1,500 or less.

Scott Shalley, president of the Florida Retail Federation, told the News Service of Florida that consumers should expect some retailers to realize additional savings.

“A lot of our retailers are going to be offering sales alongside the sales tax exemption and really trying to get people to get out and shop,” Shalley said. “We are in a time of high inflation and you need to spread the dollar as much as you can.”

Shalley called the tax exemption “a big break for the consumer.”

“Although there are discretionary expenses, there are things that must be purchased, that students need to return to school. So this is a really important vacation,” Shalley said.

Research group Florida TaxWatch estimated that the back-to-school tax exemption could save Florida consumers $100 million.

“In 2022, a year already defined by record and runaway inflation, Florida TaxWatch can certainly appreciate the savings this sales tax exemption will once again generate, but we also hope that parents see this as an opportunity to help their children. – students of all ages – be excited about all they will learn and achieve at school,” TaxWatch President and CEO Dominic Calabro said in a statement Wednesday.

Lawmakers were loaded with money this year, which helped them give tax breaks.

The sales tax exemption for children’s books began in May and will continue until August 14. Intended to give consumers a break from reading material primarily for children 12 and under, it applies to purchases of picture books, books for beginning and intermediate readers. notebooks.

Under an exemption that began in early July, sales tax on diapers and baby and toddler clothing will be waived until June 30, 2023.

In addition, lawmakers approved a sales tax exemption that will continue until June 30, 2024 on purchases to strengthen homes against potentially damaging storms. Additionally, an exemption on purchases of energy-efficient appliances will last until June 30, 2023.

A week-long sales tax holiday on home improvement supplies — dubbed by lawmakers the “tool time” holiday — will begin Sept. 3. In addition, the state’s 25 cents per gallon gasoline tax will be suspended for the month of October.

Around June 1, the start of hurricane season, the state provided a tax exemption for purchases of disaster preparedness supplies. It also held a “Freedom Week” tax holiday around July 4 on various leisure and entertainment purchases.

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