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More items exempt for tax holiday weekend

By Scott Harvey

– The annual sales tax holiday kicks off this weekend, and this year Texas residents will be able to purchase more for less, as legislators this spring expanded the number of items that qualify for exemption.

House Bill 1808 added 27 school supply items that, if priced less than $100, join clothes, footwear and some backpacks in being available tax-free.

Among the new additions to the list of tax-exempt items are binders, calculators, notebooks, and lunch boxes.

Texas Comptroller Susan Combs says the tax breaks are expected to save families collectively nearly $9 million in state and local sales taxes this year.

"Families across the state are working hard to stretch their dollar and I hope this will ease the financial burden on some parents preparing their child for the upcoming school year," said State Sen. Bob Deuell (R-Greenville).

According to the Comptroller's office, Texas taxpayers have saved nearly $442 million since the inception of the August tax-free weekend in 1999. Additional information and a complete list of tax-exempt items can be found at http://www.window.state.tx.us/taxinfo/taxpubs/tx98_490/tx98_490.html.

This year's sales tax holiday runs Friday, August 21 through Sunday, August 23.