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Sales Tax Holiday: What Ohioans Need to Know

According to the National Retail Federation, the average household spends more than $660 on back-to-school shopping. (Pixabay)
According to the National Retail Federation, the average household spends more than $660 on back-to-school shopping. (Pixabay)
August 3, 2017

COLUMBUS, Ohio – Summer break is coming to an end for many school districts in Ohio, which means the daunting and sometimes expensive ritual of back-to-school shopping begins.

But the burden can be somewhat eased this weekend.

Friday through Saturday is a back-to-school sales tax holiday in Ohio, which means certain school supplies, instructional materials and clothing items will be sold without tax.

But there are guidelines, says Joe Testa, Ohio Tax commissioner. He explains individual clothing items must be $75 or less, and supplies and instructional materials priced at $20 or less per item.

"So let's say for example there's a jacket that you want to buy your child for school that sells for $80,” he points out. “Obviously that would not be eligible. But if it was sold for $75 and you had four kids you could buy four of them and pay no sales tax on any of them."

The tax exemption also applies to the same items purchased online.

According to the National Retail Federation, the average household spends more than $660 on back to school shopping.

This is the third year in a row that Ohio has held a back-to-school tax holiday, and the recently signed state budget authorizes another for 2018. Testa says overall there has been positive feedback.

"It creates some excitement,” he states. “It does give people an opportunity to get a tax break on those items purchased under those conditions during that weekend, so that's seen as a positive.

“The retailers back that up each time that we've done that and of course many other state do it as well."

Alabama, Arkansas, Iowa, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia are among other states also hosting tax holidays in 2017.


Mary Kuhlman, Public News Service - OH