Weather awareness tax holiday starts today

Published 12:00 am Friday, February 21, 2014

Marvin’s Building Materials yard manager Kaylene Clark sorts items that will be tax free today through Sunday.

Marvin’s Building Materials yard manager Kaylene Clark sorts items that will be tax free today through Sunday.

In conjunction with Severe Weather Awareness Week in Alabama, the state is holding the third annual Severe Weather Awareness tax-free holiday today through Sunday, with many items deemed necessary during a weather emergency on the list of products exempt from state sales tax.

While local sales tax may still apply, the exemption covers listed items that are $60 or less individually.

The holiday officially began this morning at 12:01 and ends Sunday night at midnight.

Items covered under the tax exemption include, batteries, cell phone batteries and charges, light sources, tarps, and other items used in emergencies.

In addition, any portable generator and power cords used to provide light or communications or preserve food in the event of a power outage are also exempt, provided the sales price $1,000 or less.

At Andalusia’s Marvin’s Building Materials location, yard manager Kaylene Clark said she hopes people will take more advantage of the holiday than they have in the previous two years.

“We usually see a lot of people on the (tax free) school weekends, but people usually buy this sort of thing more during hurricane season,” Clark said. “Maybe they will do it early this year.”

The tax holiday coincides with this week’s weather awareness campaign in Alabama, which comes just prior to start of the spring tornado season.

The full list of tax-exempt items includes:

• AAA-cell batteries; AA-cell batteries; C-cell batteries; D-cell batteries; 6-volt batteries; 9-volt batteries;

• cellular phone batteries;

• cellular phone chargers;

• portable, self-powered or battery-powered radios, two-way radios weather band radios or NOAA weather radios;

• portable, self-powered light sources, including battery-powered flashlights, lanterns or emergency glow sticks;

• tarpaulin;

• plastic sheeting;

• plastic drop cloths;

• ground anchor systems, such as bungee cords or rope, or tie-down kits;

• duct tape;

• plywood, window film or other materials specifically designed to protect window coverings;

• non-electric food storage coolers or water storage containers;

• non-electric can openers;

• artificial ice;

• blue ice;

• ice packs;

• reusable ice;

• self-contained first aid kits;

• fire extinguishers;

• smoke detectors;

• carbon monoxide detectors; and

• gas or diesel fuel tanks or containers.