Retail Boost: Sales tax holiday good for the economy

For a fourth year in a row, back-to-school shoppers in Ohio can take advantage of a sales tax holiday on certain items today through Sunday. It is an important way to help those faced with an extra hit to their budgets this time of year — and the must-have items for kids can certainly add up.

Buckeye State retailers will get a boost, too, as clothing items up to $75 each, and school supplies and instructional materials up to $20 each will be exempt from state and county sales and use taxes.

Ohio Rep. Andy Thompson, R-Marietta, made an important point about the sales tax holiday, however.

” … I also encourage people to shop locally and support local businesses to keep money in the district and within our state.”

Most people who take advantage of the break on back-to-school items end up purchasing other, non-exempt items during that weekend as well. For a small, locally owned business, that kind of shopping can be a real shot in the arm. According to a University of Cincinnati study, the first sales tax holiday in 2015 generated an EXTRA $4.7 million in consumption during that weekend, but also saved consumers approximately $3.3 million.

And, by the way, West Virginia lawmakers might want to take note — the study showed Ohio counties that border other states experienced a 15.48 percent increase in sales tax collection during that weekend.

Do not miss out on this opportunity to save a little money on items that must be purchased, anyway; and support a small, locally owned business, if possible, in the process.