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Missouri 'Back-to-School' Sales Tax Holiday begins Friday

Sunday, July 29, 2012 | 6:00 a.m. CDT; updated 3:36 p.m. CDT, Sunday, July 29, 2012

COLUMBIA — Missouri's ninth-annual "Back-to-School" Sales Tax Holiday will begin at midnight Friday and continue through Sunday.

The annual event was created to help shoppers save money on school-related purchases. During the holiday, the state's 4.225 percent sales tax will not be assessed on certain products, including clothing, school supplies and computers priced under a certain dollar amount.

The Missouri Department of Revenue does not require cities or counties to eliminate their local taxes. Columbia and Boone County governments have opted out of the tax break event and will still be charging city and county sales tax. So, Columbia shoppers will still have to pay local taxes on all purchases.

"The city is not planning to authorize the tax holiday because sales tax seriously affect the city's budget," said Toni Messina, public communications director for the city.

The state sales tax will not apply to the following items during the weekend:

  • Clothing that does not have a value exceeding $100. Accessories such as watches, handbags, scarves, jewelry, ties, umbrellas, handkerchiefs and sunglasses are not included in the tax break.
  • School supplies such as notebooks, textbooks and pens priced below $50 per purchase are eligible. Computer software is exempt from the sales tax if it costs less than $350. CD players, headphones, portable telephones and sporting equipment are not eligible.
  • Personal computers costing less than $3,500 and computer peripheral devices priced below $3,500 are included in the tax break. A personal computer can be a laptop or a desktop. Peripheral devices include disk drives, CD drives, modems, mouses, speakers, printers and scanners. 

Supervising editor is Jake Kreinberg.


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