Currently 16 states have back-to-school sales tax holidays planned for 2017, with most located in the Southeast. Some states also have sales tax holidays for other products, such as guns and hunting supplies, energy-efficient appliances and hurricane preparedness items.
“Sales tax holidays may provide some taxpayers savings on necessary purchases, but they’re a distraction from the bigger problems of our states’ upside-down tax systems,” said Meg Wiehe, deputy director at the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP), a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit, non-partisan think tank that recently released a report on tax holidays.
State and local governments lose revenue from temporary tax holidays, and that loss eventually translates into cuts to public programs or higher taxes elsewhere, ITEP’s report said. And ultimately, someone has to foot the bill for the holidays. It estimates that in 2017 sales tax holidays will cost governments in the 16 states holding them more than $250 million. Read more