Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV

July 27, 2013

Sales tax holiday — Welcomed help for retailers, parents

Bluefield Daily Telegraph

— Get ready to shop tax free next week in the Commonwealth of Virginia. The state’s popular Back to School Sales Tax Holiday begins on Friday, Aug. 2, and continues through Sunday, Aug. 4.

During the sales tax holiday, parents will be able to purchase a number of back to school supplies for their children tax free. Items that will be exempt from the sales tax during the holiday include most articles of clothing and footwear priced at $100 or less each, and school or office supplies that cost $20 or less per item. There is no limit to the number of items an individual can purchase without paying the sales tax, provided each item meets the sales tax holiday restrictions.

“After four straight years of revenue surpluses, it is evident that Virginia’s economy continues to strengthen,” Gov. Bob McDonnell said. “I hope Virginians will go out and take advantage of this holiday by spending their back-to-school dollars at Virginia retailers. Not only will this continue to benefit our state’s economy and employers, it will save Virginians some money at the same time.”

We agree. And we urge families across the region to take advantage of the tax-free holiday next week at Virginia-side retailers.

A list of qualifying items, guidelines for the holiday, and answers to frequently asked questions are available on the Virginia Department of Taxation’s website at Anyone can buy tax-exempt items during the holiday. And that includes West Virginia-side shoppers who cross the state-line border to purchase goods at a Virginia-side store. The event is not limited to purchases for students. During the tax holiday, retailers may elect to pay the sales tax themselves on any non-qualifying items that they want to offer tax-free to customers. As a result, shoppers can expect to find a lot of good deals on other items as well.

All area residents should take advantage of the sales tax holiday. It provides a tremendous benefit not only to area families, but also Virginia-side retailers who will see a large influx of customers during the three-day holiday. And many of those families who will take advantage of the sales tax holiday come from neighboring West Virginia. That’s because West Virginia still inexplicably doesn’t have a back to school sales tax holiday.

But that’s one of the advantages of living near the state line border. We get to experience the best of both states. Please take advantage of the sales tax holiday — even if you don’t have children and even if you don’t live in Virginia. Help support the local economy.