Severe Weather Prep Sales Tax Holiday Begins Friday


By Tamika Bickham

The state is about to launch its first-ever sales tax holiday on storm supplies. It's in response to last year's deadly tornado outbreaks, so that we're all better prepared the next time dangerous weather threatens.

Eric Russell is just one of many shoppers looking for household supplies.

"I'm just coming in to look around and see if they have any kind of deals or specials," said Russell.

Shoppers may want to come back over the weekend when their receipt total could be as much as ten percent less.

"We have the gas cans, regular gas cans and diesel gas cans," said Lowe's Assistant Store Manager, Nathan Law.

Those items along with weather radios, batteries, duct tape, fire extinguishers, generators, and plywood will be exempt from the state sales and use tax this Friday through Sunday.

"Any generator that is $1,000 dollars or less will qualify and then the other items, if they are $60 or less, will qualify," said Law.

This is the state's first-ever severe weather preparedness sales tax holiday. It started in response to last year's historic deadly tornado outbreak.

"Paying for anything is helpful. It's for a good cause," said shopper, Cynthia Jackson.

"I think it's great. Anytime I can save a little money is a great thing," said shopper, Perry Kelly.

While a sales tax holiday can lure shoppers looking for a break, the goal is that they check out more prepared for a natural disaster.

"I've had neighbors come around and just ask for simple things like batteries. Just think if there was a crisis and they are out of batteries and I had to share mine," said Montgomery resident, Bob Elmore.

"The only thing I have is a storm door right now, but I need the weather radio," said Jackson.

Next year, the sales tax holiday will be held the last full weekend in February, before the spring severe weather season.

Items covered by the sales tax holiday include:

  • Several types of batteries, including cell phone batteries and chargers
  • Battery-powered radios
  • NOAA weather radios
  • Flashlights, lanterns, and emergency glow sticks
  • First aid kits
  • Duct tape
  • Plywood, window film or other materials, specifically designed to protect window openings
  • Portable generators
  • Gas or Diesel fuel containers
  • Tarpaulins and plastic sheeting
  • Any non-electric food storage cooler or water storage container
  • Non-electric can openers
  • Any artificial ice, blue ice, ice packs, or reusable ice
  • Fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, and carbon monoxide detectors
  • Ground anchor systems such as cords or rope or tie-down kits

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