Hurricane tax ‘holiday’ adds pet supplies

With a sales-tax “holiday” starting this weekend, Floridians can save a few dollars on pet supplies as they stockpile other needs for the upcoming hurricane season.The state’s two-week disaster-preparedness tax holiday will begin Saturday and, for the first time, shoppers will be able to avoid paying sales taxes on numerous types of pet supplies. The holiday was part of a broad tax package (HB 7071) that lawmakers passed in March and Gov. Ron DeSantis signed on May 6.Stay Prepared: WPBF 25 News coverage on hurricanesAt the request of a Girl Scout Troop 60601 in Palm Harbor, lawmakers agreed to lift sales taxes during the holiday on pet carriers that cost $100 or less; pet beds that cost $40 or less; bags of pet food that cost $30 or less; bags of cat litter that cost $25 or less; leashes, collars and muzzles that sell for $20 or less; packages of pet-waste disposable bags that cost $15 or less; and cans of pet food that cost $2 or less.Video below: NOAA calls for above-average 2022 Atlantic hurricane seasonThe troop proposed including pet supplies as part of work toward what is known as a “Silver Award.”“By adding these items to the tax holiday, we will help citizens to be ready when an emergency happens,” one member of the troop told the House Ways & Means Committee in February. “They will be able to take their pets to a local shelter and have the mandatory supplies for their pets to stay there.””We need to reemphasize the importance of early preparation’: West Palm Beach leaders urge residents to get ready for hurricane seasonThe overall tax holiday, which will last through June 10, is geared toward the June 1 start of hurricane season. It has become a regular tax break for Floridians, similar to a back-to-school tax holiday held around the start of the school year.Pet supplies aren’t the only new items included in this year’s disaster-preparedness holiday. Lawmakers added smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and carbon monoxide detectors that cost $70 or less amid calls for residents to safely use generators. Also, people can avoid paying sales taxes on generators that cost $1,000 or less.“We have now had more deaths over the last several years from generator carbon-monoxide poisoning than we have from storm surge itself,” Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Kevin Guthrie said.Guthrie added that the state has had “more indirect fatalities with disasters over the last several seasons than we have with direct fatalities.”Video below: WPBF 25 News 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season Forecast“That’s obviously something that we want to make sure we tell people to be safe on, generator function and how to make sure that people are setting their generators up properly, which is not outside of a window, not inside of their closed garage,” he said.Florida Retail Federation President Scott Shalley encouraged people to take advantage of the discount period, as inflation is at a four-decade high and experts predict an active hurricane season.“At a time when people are feeling the crunch of inflation, this is a really great opportunity to get out and prepare for hurricane season and save a little money while doing so,” Shalley said.Other discounted items this year include:TarpaulinsWaterproof sheeting and tie-down kits that sell for $100 or lessCoolers and portable power banks that sell for $60 or lessPortable lights that cost $40 or lessReusable ice packs that cost $20 or lessGas tanksPortable radios, two-way radios and weather-band radiosPacks of AA-cell, AAA-cell, C-cell, D-cell, 6-volt or 9-volt batteries that cost $50 or lessFor a full list of items, click here.Shopper reactionsShoppers tell WPBF 25 News they are grateful that another tax-free holiday is here.”I thought it was a wonderful idea,” said Noel Fischer of North Palm Beach.”Tax-free holidays are always appreciated so I think that that’s a good thing,” said Alishia Parenteau of Indiantown, who plans to take advantage of the tax-free holiday. “Those are all items that we need and to save a few dollars all adds up.”People are really struggling to make ends meet and if you can save some money on batteries that you’re going to need or a generator, God-forbid we ever get a storm that’s that severe that we are needing generators, yes, we want to have those items in our tool kit in the garage ready to be used and not scrambling and having to pay extra sales tax on it later.” Florida Retail FederationThe Florida Retail Federation is a statewide advocacy organization that represents retailers in Florida. “We’re excited about (the tax-free holiday),” said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. “We refer to it as a win-win-win in terms of consumers get the opportunity to save a little money on sales taxes, the retailers see a little boost in business and most importantly, Floridians get prepared for the hurricane season.”Generally, we see a boost in (sales at retailers during these events) for sure. People just don’t like paying taxes and the opportunity to get a little break is certainly something that consumers have embraced over the years. The legislature has been pretty generous this year with a 14-day tax holiday and it covers items really from small items all the way up to $1,000 generators so the opportunity for savings is pretty significant.”Folks are getting squeezed a little bit by inflation right now and it’s kind of a double-edged sword because we’re asking folks to spend some money to get prepared for the season, but it is an opportunity to do so when you can save. We just encourage folks to embrace the holiday and shop with your local retailers.”

With a sales-tax “holiday” starting this weekend, Floridians can save a few dollars on pet supplies as they stockpile other needs for the upcoming hurricane season.

The state’s two-week disaster-preparedness tax holiday will begin Saturday and, for the first time, shoppers will be able to avoid paying sales taxes on numerous types of pet supplies. The holiday was part of a broad tax package (HB 7071) that lawmakers passed in March and Gov. Ron DeSantis signed on May 6.

Stay Prepared: WPBF 25 News coverage on hurricanes

At the request of a Girl Scout Troop 60601 in Palm Harbor, lawmakers agreed to lift sales taxes during the holiday on pet carriers that cost $100 or less; pet beds that cost $40 or less; bags of pet food that cost $30 or less; bags of cat litter that cost $25 or less; leashes, collars and muzzles that sell for $20 or less; packages of pet-waste disposable bags that cost $15 or less; and cans of pet food that cost $2 or less.

Video below: NOAA calls for above-average 2022 Atlantic hurricane season

The troop proposed including pet supplies as part of work toward what is known as a “Silver Award.”

“By adding these items to the tax holiday, we will help citizens to be ready when an emergency happens,” one member of the troop told the House Ways & Means Committee in February. “They will be able to take their pets to a local shelter and have the mandatory supplies for their pets to stay there.”

“We need to reemphasize the importance of early preparation’: West Palm Beach leaders urge residents to get ready for hurricane season

The overall tax holiday, which will last through June 10, is geared toward the June 1 start of hurricane season. It has become a regular tax break for Floridians, similar to a back-to-school tax holiday held around the start of the school year.

Pet supplies aren’t the only new items included in this year’s disaster-preparedness holiday. Lawmakers added smoke detectors, fire extinguishers and carbon monoxide detectors that cost $70 or less amid calls for residents to safely use generators. Also, people can avoid paying sales taxes on generators that cost $1,000 or less.

“We have now had more deaths over the last several years from generator carbon-monoxide poisoning than we have from storm surge itself,” Florida Division of Emergency Management Director Kevin Guthrie said.

Guthrie added that the state has had “more indirect fatalities with disasters over the last several seasons than we have with direct fatalities.”

Video below: WPBF 25 News 2022 Atlantic Hurricane Season Forecast

“That’s obviously something that we want to make sure we tell people to be safe on, generator function and how to make sure that people are setting their generators up properly, which is not outside of a window, not inside of their closed garage,” he said.

Florida Retail Federation President Scott Shalley encouraged people to take advantage of the discount period, as inflation is at a four-decade high and experts predict an active hurricane season.

“At a time when people are feeling the crunch of inflation, this is a really great opportunity to get out and prepare for hurricane season and save a little money while doing so,” Shalley said.

Other discounted items this year include:

  • Tarpaulins
  • Waterproof sheeting and tie-down kits that sell for $100 or less
  • Coolers and portable power banks that sell for $60 or less
  • Portable lights that cost $40 or less
  • Reusable ice packs that cost $20 or less
  • Gas tanks
  • Portable radios, two-way radios and weather-band radios
  • Packs of AA-cell, AAA-cell, C-cell, D-cell, 6-volt or 9-volt batteries that cost $50 or less

For a full list of items, click here.

Shopper reactions

Shoppers tell WPBF 25 News they are grateful that another tax-free holiday is here.

“I thought it was a wonderful idea,” said Noel Fischer of North Palm Beach.

“Tax-free holidays are always appreciated so I think that that’s a good thing,” said Alishia Parenteau of Indiantown, who plans to take advantage of the tax-free holiday. “Those are all items that we need and to save a few dollars all adds up.

“People are really struggling to make ends meet and if you can save some money on batteries that you’re going to need or a generator, God-forbid we ever get a storm that’s that severe that we are needing generators, yes, we want to have those items in our tool kit in the garage ready to be used and not scrambling and having to pay extra sales tax on it later.”

Florida Retail Federation

The Florida Retail Federation is a statewide advocacy organization that represents retailers in Florida.

“We’re excited about (the tax-free holiday),” said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. “We refer to it as a win-win-win in terms of consumers get the opportunity to save a little money on sales taxes, the retailers see a little boost in business and most importantly, Floridians get prepared for the hurricane season.

“Generally, we see a boost in (sales at retailers during these events) for sure. People just don’t like paying taxes and the opportunity to get a little break is certainly something that consumers have embraced over the years. The legislature has been pretty generous this year with a 14-day tax holiday and it covers items really from small items all the way up to $1,000 generators so the opportunity for savings is pretty significant.

“Folks are getting squeezed a little bit by inflation right now and it’s kind of a double-edged sword because we’re asking folks to spend some money to get prepared for the season, but it is an opportunity to do so when you can save. We just encourage folks to embrace the holiday and shop with your local retailers.”

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