Your Views: Take a (tax) break for school supplies and clothes


To the editor:
Virginias annual back-to-school sales tax holiday begins Friday and runs through Sunday. During this three-day period, customers will not be charged the 5-percent state and local retail sales tax on school supplies priced at $20 or less per item or on articles of clothing, including footwear, costing $100 or less each. This includes items like pencils, pens, binders, paints, musical instruments and calculators, as well as pants, shirts, formal wear, shoes, flip-flops and even uniforms. 
As a parent, I know how expensive getting ready for school can be. More than ever, families need a hand making ends meet, and this will provide some relief. But remember the sales tax holiday is for all shoppers in Virginia, not just for those with children heading back to school, so nows a good time to stock up on office supplies or clothing for adults as well. There is no limit on the number of items you can buy as long as each one qualifies under the holidays guidelines.
(Lists of exempt items along with guidelines for the sales tax holiday and a set of frequently asked questions are available on the Tax Departments Sales Tax Holiday Information Center at
Better still, the sales tax holiday will give our local retailers a boost, since its open to anyone shopping in Virginia stores, including visitors from across the Potomac. What better opportunity to invite your friends in D.C. and Maryland to come and enjoy a weekend of shopping in our community?