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New Virginia law combines dates of sales tax “holidays”

Legislation enacted during the 2015 General Assembly (Senate Bill 1319) combined the three existing sales tax holidays into one, three-day holiday in August. The legislation took effect on July 1, 2015.
Prior Virginia law allowed for three separate sales tax holiday periods during which specified tangible personal property could be purchased exempt of the Retail Sales and Use Tax: a week-long exemption on hurricane preparedness items in May, a three-day exemption on school supplies and clothing in August, and a four-day exemption on items designated as Energy Star or WaterSense in October.
The legislation consolidates all three of these holidays into the same August weekend each year, with the holiday beginning on the first Friday in August and ending on the Sunday that immediately follows. 

In 2015, the holiday begins Friday, Aug. 7 at 12:01 a.m. and ends on Sunday, Aug. 9, at 11:59 p.m. 

In 2016 and subsequent years, there will be no separate Hurricane Preparedness holiday held in May, nor a separate Energy Star or WaterSense tax holiday in October. 
During the combined sales tax holiday, consumers may purchase portable generators, gas-powered chainsaws, chainsaw accessories, other hurricane preparedness items, clothing, footwear, school supplies, and Energy-Star or WaterSense-designated items, provided that each such item is priced below the maximum sales price and meets the other requirements set forth in the statutes.

Notable additions to the list of qualifying items from previous years include certain computer supplies priced at $20 or less per item, such as computer storage media and printer paper, and all light bulbs affixed with the Energy Star label.    
For further information, visit and click the “Learn more” link in the sales tax holiday slide on the Tax Department’s home page.

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