Governor Terry McAuliffe announced July 21 that Virginia will offer a sales tax holiday from August 5-7 so that shoppers can purchase qualifying school supplies, clothing and footwear, emergency preparedness items, and certain energy-efficient products without paying state and local sales tax. This two-day tax break is aimed to financially assist families for back-to-school shopping and encourage Virginians to take necessary precautions during hurricane season.\r\n\u201cThis sales tax holiday will make items that help families prepare for the school year or for a potential emergency more affordable,\u201d said Governor McAuliffe. \u201cIt is my hope that shoppers will use this time to get their children the items they need to succeed in school, as well as stock up on the essentials that may come in handy during a hurricane or other emergency where electricity or clean water may be unavailable for an extended period of time. This tax-free weekend is integrally important in ensuring all students and families have the tools and resources they need to be able to thrive and prosper here in Virginia.\u201d\r\nTax exempt items include:\r\n\u2022 Most school and office supplies, such as pens, loose-leaf paper, scissors, binders, backpacks, and construction paper, priced at $20 or less.\r\n\u2022 Clothing and footwear, priced at $100 or less per item or pair.\r\n\u2022 Batteries, flashlights, bottled water, tarps, duct tape, fire extinguishers, cell-phone chargers, smoke detectors, buckets, rope, and first aid kits, priced at $60 or less.\r\n\u2022 Gas-powered chainsaws, priced at $350 or less, and chainsaw accessories, priced at $60 or less.\r\n\u2022 Portable generators, priced at $1,000 or less.\r\n\u2022 Energy Star-labeled dishwashers, washing machines, air conditioners, ceiling fans, light bulbs, dehumidifiers, and refrigerators, priced at $2,500 or less.\r\n\u2022 WaterSense-labeled sink faucets, faucet accessories, aerators, shower heads, toilets, urinals, and landscape irrigation controllers, priced at $2,500 or less.\r\nAll retailers who sell the exempt products are required to participate in the sales tax holiday. In addition, retailers may choose to pay the sales tax on any taxable items and pass the savings on to customers.\r\nOnline purchases of qualifying products are exempt from the sales tax as long as orders are placed and paid for during the August 5-7 exemption period and the sellers have the items available for immediate shipment.\r\nFor more details, visit the Virginia Department of Taxation\u2019s website at www.tax.virginia.gov\/salestaxholiday.