Sales tax holiday coming this weekend

Tuesday, August 2, 2011 | 4:23 p.m. CDT; updated 5:11 p.m. CDT, Tuesday, August 2, 2011

COLUMBIA — Missouri's sales tax holiday will run this weekend from midnight Thursday to midnight Sunday.

The tax holiday exempts state sale taxes for consumers buying school supplies, electronics and clothing. The exemption was first advocated by the state Chamber of Commerce and Industry in 2003, and it took effect in 2004. Columbia officials opted out of the program and the city sales tax, which is 3.325 percent, still applies.

More information

Resources on areas that have opted out of the sales tax holiday:

The Department of Revenue also has a helpful FAQ on the tax holiday.

What items are covered:

  • Clothing less than $100 an item: Includes clothes and footwear, as well as cloth and other materials used to make uniforms.
  • Personal computers less than $3,500: Includes laptops, desktops, tablets and computer components, as well as all computer accessories.
  • Computer software less than $350: All software, not just educational software.
  • School supplies up to $50 per purchase: Typical school supplies including book bags, backpacks and textbooks. Does not include cell phones, watches, radios, CD players, headphones, sports equipment and office supplies beyond the overlap with school supplies.

Not Included:

  • Watches, watchbands, jewelry, handbags, umbrellas, scarves, ties, headbands, belt buckles, cell phones (including smartphones), radios, CD players, headphones, sports equipment and office supplies — such as copiers or fax machines — beyond the overlap with school supplies.

State sales tax is currently 4.225 percent. For exemption, it's not required that items be used for school purposes. They simply must be items normally used in a school setting.

Single purchases are capped at $50 in school supplies and $3,850 in computer equipment and software. After those caps, tax must be paid on the amount by which the purchases exceed the cap.

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