School supplies tax-exempt this weekend

Published 11:00 pm Monday, July 30, 2012

Notebooks, pens, clothes – the cost of sending a child to school can quickly add up.

But for many parents in Alabama, there’s relief this weekend when it comes to back-to-school shopping.

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Alabama’s 2012 Sales Tax Holiday begins at 12:01 a.m. this Friday and ends at midnight on Sunday. That means many school must-haves can be purchased tax-free. All municipalities in Pike County are participating in the holiday, except Banks, according to the State Of Alabama Department of Revenue.

“I’ve participated ever since Alabama started the weekend,” said Pam Ray who has two children enrolled at Troy City Schools.

In the fall, Ray’s son will be a freshman at Charles Henderson High School and her daughter will be in the first 4K class offered by the city school system.

“The weekend is something I think we need,” Ray said. “School is not cheap. There are a lot of things you have to buy.”

All “general use” clothing that is $100 or less is exempt, and so are many school and art supplies, such as binders, crayons, watercolors, clay, paintbrushes, folders, glue, highlighters, pencils, paper, markers, lunch boxes and index cards.

“Lat year I bought a computer because we needed one,” Ray shared. “It was the perfect time.”

Computers, printers, electronic schedulers and software less than $750 are also tax exempt.

“All of it really adds up to make a difference,” Ray said, noting that people shouldn’t be afraid of crowds this weekend.

“The stores are really not that bad,” Ray said. “They have everything laid out where you can easily access what you need. Everybody goes, they get what they need and they leave.”

Ray said she’s noticed such a difference at checkout time that she always waits until the tax-free holiday to shop for school supplies.

“I love it,” Ray said. “And I’m very appreciative to Alabama’s officials for allowing us this weekend.”

For a complete list of tax-exempt items, visit