It’s that time of year again. As this weekend approaches, many Floridians are gearing up for 72 hours of no sales tax on school supplies, clothing, and more for the upcoming 2012-2013 school year.
The sales tax weekend lasts from August 3rd through 5th, a couple weeks earlier than usual due to a a few school districts’ decision to start classes during the second week of August. Here in Hillsborough County, the first day of public school isn’t until Tuesday, August 21, but Tampa shopping figures are still expected to increase over the weekend.
When it comes to which items are tax-free, the general rule of thumb is to expect no tax clothing and shoes $75 and under and no tax on school supplies up to $15. There are some exceptions, though.
According to the Florida Department of Revenue, qualifying clothing items include regular clothing, wallets, and bags, including handbags, backpacks, fanny packs, and diaper bags. This does not include briefcases, suitcases, and other garment bags as well as watches, watchbands, jewelry, umbrellas, handkerchiefs or sporting equipment.
When it comes to school supply shopping in Tampa, the Florida Department of Revenue won’t include tax on items including pens, pencils, erasers, crayons, notebooks, notebook filler paper, legal pads, binders, lunch boxes, construction paper, markers, folders, poster board, composition books, poster paper, scissors, cellophane tape, glue, paste, rulers, computer disks, protractors, compasses and calculators.
The annual Florida Tax Holiday is always a huge weekend for retailers throughout the Tampa Bay area, so use this knowledge accordingly if you’re making plans to shop this weekend.
In terms of economic impact, the Florida Retail Federation expects statewide growth over 2011′s figures. The National Retail Federation expects parents of K-12 students to spend a collective $30.3 billion on back-to-school shopping over the weekend.