Thursday, January 29, 2015

A Sales Tax Holiday to Relieve Costs Associated with Back to School Items

Guest Column from State Representative Jim Buchy

Ohio families can now prepare for a new major retail shopping season. Senate Bill 243, which passed both chambers and was signed into law during the 130th General Assembly, means that Ohioans will be able to save sales tax dollars when handling their back-to-school shopping this coming year. Ohio’s first ever Sales Tax Holiday will take place August 7th-9th, and experts say shoppers should expect Black Friday-like excitement.

This bill is very important to me, as eliminating the sales tax on these items both at retail stores and on the internet will help ensure that all children and students can get what is necessary for the upcoming school year. A good investment in their education is a good investment into their future, and that’s what the Sales Tax Holiday seeks to create.

Many popular retail stores have shown their support for this new Sales Tax Holiday, such as Walmart, Macy’s, J.C. Penny, CVS, and Best Buy. These stores are frequent stops for back-to-school shoppers, and their backing makes it even more exciting. With the help of this bill, Ohio families with children K-12 will save roughly $40 each on their school shopping list in a normal school year.

This measure will promote economic growth in Ohio and will allow consumers to spend manageable amounts of money on the things that they need for the upcoming school year. The Sales Tax Holiday is expected to put $78 million back into the pockets of Ohioans. It would also provide a boost for Ohio’s retail sector, which makes up 18 percent of Ohio’s GDP and employs one in four Ohio citizens.

There are eighteen other states in the country that have a Sales Tax Holiday. Implementing this could potentially result in an economic boost very similar to the one seen in Florida. That state posted $115 million more in tax revenue during the three-day tax-free period, showing that consumers were buying many items that were not tax-free as well.

The bill made its way through the legislative process, passing through both the House and the Senate, and was signed by Governor Kasich on December 19th, 2014. We now look forward to seeing its outcome this coming August. I am confident that we have done good work for the people of Ohio with this bill.

Please take a minute to look over a website explaining more about the Sales Tax Holiday at In addition, a special survey is available at which will be useful in gathering feedback about this new measure.

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