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TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/NSF) — It’s that time of year again!  Florida shoppers can once again take advantage of a three-day “tax-free holiday” weekend in anticipation of the new school year.

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This year’s sales tax holiday, which got underway at the stroke of midnight on Friday, runs throug11:59 p.m. on Sunday, August 5.

The three-day tax holiday allows shoppers to avoid paying state and local sales taxes on most clothes and footwear costing $60 or less and school supplies that cost $15 or less.

This year computer equipment is not on the list of tax-free items.


Early proposals this year in the Legislature would have offered a 10-day holiday, as requested by Gov. Rick Scott, with taxes lifted on the first $1,000 of the cost of personal computers and related accessories.

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But as lawmakers shifted budget priorities after the Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, a broad package (HB 7087) of tax and fee reductions was scaled down from a high of $618 million to a final amount of $171 million. And a proposal to extend the tax discount to computers was cut.

An estimate from state economists doesn’t indicate the exclusion of computers from the tax holiday will alter the plans of families getting ready for the August start of the school year.

The holiday this year is projected to save shoppers $32.7 million, reducing state revenue by $26 million and local government revenue by $6.7 million.

In 2017, when laptops were on the discount list, the overall savings stood at $33.4 million.

The state has offered the school tax holiday 16 times since 1998. The discount period went away a decade ago during the recession. Since being revived in 2010, it has been held annually. Other than in 2015, when the discount period was extended to 10 days, the holiday has lasted for three days.

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“The News Service of Florida’s Jim Turner contributed to this report.”