The beginning of the school year can present a financial burden to families as they often buy a year's worth of new shoes, supplies, technology and clothes all at once. However, some relief is expected with Missouri's annual sales tax holiday, running this year from Friday, Aug. 4 through Sunday, Aug. 6.

The beginning of the school year can present a financial burden to families as they often buy a year’s worth of new shoes, supplies, technology and clothes all at once. However, some relief is expected with Missouri’s annual sales tax holiday, running this year from Friday, Aug. 4 through Sunday, Aug. 6.

This sales tax holiday does exactly what the title suggests, relieves the application of sales tax on items bought primarily for school purposes.

Most area counties and municipalities participate in this annual “holiday” meaning this weekend could be the most appropriate time to head to stores to save money on essentials.

The Cities of Palmyra and Paris do not participate in the sales tax holiday. Neither does Pike County, Mo.

But other municipalities, including Hannibal, Louisiana, Clarksville, Bowling Green, Monroe City and New London, as well as Marion, Ralls, and Monroe Counties all participate.

The holiday, which is enshrined in state statute, specifically defines what counts towards the sales tax holiday. The items purchased must be for personal use.

There are three main groups of goods laid out in state statute: clothing, personal computers and school supplies.

With a supply list seemingly a mile long for most children in elementary school through eighth grade, most items on lists qualify for the tax holiday.

According to state statute, “The term shall not include watches, radios, CD players, headphones, sporting equipment, portable or desktop telephones, copiers or other office equipment, furniture, or fixtures.”

Clothing does not include “watches, watchbands, jewelry, handbags, handkerchiefs, umbrellas, scarves, ties, headbands, or belt buckles.”

According to the Department of Revenue, an article of clothing cannot exceed a value of $100. For example, if a pair of jeans costs $90 and a coat costs $120, the sales tax holiday applies to the jeans, but not the coat. Similarly, school supplies should not exceed a value of $50 per purchase. Lastly, the value of a computer cannot exceed more than $1,500. 

Reach editor Eric Dundon at eric.dundon@courierpost.com .