Politics & Government

Texans: Need batteries? Get them tax-free this weekend

Batteries — single or multi-pack — are on the list of items Texans may buy tax free between April 23-25. This applies to AAA, AA, C, D, 6-volt or 9-volt batteries, as long as the cost is less than $75. The only exceptions: batteries for vehicles, boats and other motorized vehicles are not on the list and are not tax-free.
Batteries — single or multi-pack — are on the list of items Texans may buy tax free between April 23-25. This applies to AAA, AA, C, D, 6-volt or 9-volt batteries, as long as the cost is less than $75. The only exceptions: batteries for vehicles, boats and other motorized vehicles are not on the list and are not tax-free. Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Need some batteries? Maybe a smoke detector or a hatchet?

If so, this weekend is the right time to buy them, during Texas’ new Emergency Preparation Supplies Sales Tax Holiday.

State lawmakers last weekend enacted a new law, giving Texans a tax break for stocking up on items needed for any emergency.

“The severe weather, fire and flooding we had last year provided a stark reminder that Texans should be prepared for any emergency,” Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar said. “This tax holiday allows people to save money while ensuring they have the supplies they need if disaster strikes.”

The sales tax holiday runs from 12:01 a.m. Saturday, April 23, through midnight Monday, April 25.

Items on the list: first aid kits, batteries, fuel containers, axes, nonelectric can openers, hand-cranked flashlights, portable self-powered radios, fire extinguishers, tarps, carbon monoxide detectors and more — as long as each item costs less than $75.

Also eligible: portable generators priced less than $3,000 and emergency ladders and hurricane shutters that cost less than $300, according to the comptroller’s office.

There’s no limit on the number of items Texans may buy.

Items not on the list: batteries for vehicles and boats, chainsaws, plywood, camping supplies, stepladders, tents and more.

The goal of this new law, authored by state Sen. Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa, D-McAllen, is to make sure Texans stock up on needed items so they are prepared during storm seasons.

“It will also serve as an incentive for them to better protect their property and lives during and after a potential weather-related emergency,” according to an analysis of Hinojosa’s bill.

Texans could save $1.4 million in state and local sales taxes during this tax holiday, according to estimates from the comptroller’s office.

Anna Tinsley: 817-390-7610, @annatinsley

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