EDITORIAL: A tax holiday for Connecticut

EDITORIAL: A tax holiday for Connecticut

Record-Journal
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Employee Krystal Galaz straightens a display of lunch boxes and backpacks at JC Penney inside the Broadway Square Mall in Tyler, Texas Thursday Aug. 10, 2017. Tax Free Weekend is August 11th-13th with extended shopping hours at Broadway Square Mall. The sales tax holiday coincides with back to school shopping. (Sarah A. Miller/Tyler Morning Telegraph via AP)

With Connecticut lawmakers still attempting to hash out a state budget, talk of taxes is omnipresent these days. And the T-word is often said with a shudder.

It would seem sales tax holiday week arrived at just the right time.

During Connecticut’s 17th annual sales tax holiday, which began Sunday and runs through Saturday, most individual items of clothing and footwear priced under $100 are exempt from state sales tax.

Each summer, thrifty shoppers take advantage of the sales tax holiday to stock up on back-to-school fashions. The tax holiday works out well for local retailers, too, of course. It’s a win-win.

“In Connecticut and other states, the sales tax holiday generally falls around back-to-school season and getting a sales tax break certainly helps,” said Department of Revenue Services Commissioner Kevin B. Sullivan. “Just as important, retailers will add promotional inducements such as discounts, so there’s a price savings plus a tax savings and the ability of consumers to upscale their purchases. While the price of an item may start above the $100 taxable threshold, after discounts are applied, it could drop to less than $100 and is not subject to sales tax that week.”

This year, the state expects about $4.1 million in sales and use tax exemptions during tax holiday week.

Shoppers certainly will appreciate the extra cash in their pocket. And the tax break could be sizable for families with school-age children.

Consider this: According to a National Retail Federation survey, families with children in grades K-12 plan to spend an average of $673.57 on apparel and accessories, electronics, shoes and school supplies, up from last year’s $630.36.

That translates to some sizable sales tax.

Over the next few days, why not take the opportunity to make shopping a bit less taxing. With our state facing a projected deficit of $3.5 billion over the next two years, there’s no telling whether the sales tax holiday will return in 2018.


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