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August 3, 2010

Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday Starts Friday
List of Eligible Items Available to Help with Shopping List

SPRINGFIELD – With the first statewide back-to-school sales tax holiday starting this Friday, August 6 and running through Sunday, August 15, the Illinois Department of Revenue is reminding families to plan on shopping for the new clothes and school supplies their children need to get a good start at school this year.  A list of items qualifying for the five percent sales tax break is available at www.tax.illinois.gov and can be downloaded or printed from any computer and used to help plan necessary back-to-school purchases.

“Parents and guardians looking forward to sending their children back to school should welcome the sales tax holiday.  This is the equivalent of a five percent discount on the must-have items for the first day of school,” said Brian Hamer, Director, Illinois Department of Revenue.

Retailers across the state have announced plans to open their stores early to kick-off the sales tax holiday and are offering additional discounts on items required or desired for back-to-school.  In addition to those items needed immediately, families should consider stocking up on basic supplies that will be necessary for the balance of the school year. Virtually all items required by classroom teachers, including paper, binders, pens, pencils, crayons, rulers, erasers, chalk, tape, paste and glue, will be eligible for the reduced sales tax rate.  Other eligible items for reduced taxes include clothing that costs less than $100 per item, including shoes, outerwear, uniforms, gloves, hats and mittens.

During the ten-day sales tax holiday, the 5% portion of sales taxes collected at retail registers will be waived.  Sales taxes collected on behalf of local governments will continue to be collected.  The tax holiday runs about a week longer than those in Iowa and Missouri which traditionally occur during the first weekend in August.  This provides Illinois families more time to select and purchase the items their children need for back-to-school.

Families in Illinois spend between $800 million and $1.2 billion on back-to-school gear for their children.  The five percent sales tax holiday will save them between $40 and $60 million in tax payments.


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