Fla. tax free hurricane supplies - WHLT 22 Connecting the Pine Belt

Fla. tax free hurricane supplies

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Two weeks from this coming Saturday, Florida begins a nine day Hurricane Supplies sales tax holiday. The event has two main purposes.

Hurricane season begins June 1, the day after a sales tax holiday on emergency supplies kicks off.

“It’s truly personal preparedness that is the cornerstone for Florida’s ability to deal with hurricanes and other natural disasters,” said State Emergency Director Brian Koons.

Governor Rick Scott signed the legislation Monday morning. Retailers, who generally plan advertising budgets months in advance, may not do a full court press advertising the event.

John Fleming and the Florida Retail Federation says the last hurricane sales tax holiday in 2007 was a success on two fronts.

“Because it raises awareness among people that they need to buy these items,” said Fleming, “and it does encourage them to go out and maybe buy a little bit more. That’s particularly the case with hurricane supplies.”

So here’s what you can buy tax free:

  • a flashlight (<$20)
  • two way or weather radio (<$50)
  • a tarp or other waterproofing material (<$50)
  • a first aid kit (<$30)
  • a tie down system (<$50)
  • a fuel tank (<$25)Batteries (<$30)
  • a cooler (<$30)
  • reusable ice (<$10)
  • and a generator that costs less than $750

If you buy everything on the list, you’ll save about $64. If you drop the $750 generator, your saving’s only going to be about $18.

We asked what a $750 generator would power.

“You could probably power at least one of your small major appliances like a freezer or refrigerator,” said Tyler Gouldbourn of Al Pro Equipment, “enough to keep your groceries cold.”

Officials want to emphasize that the savings are an added benefit, but being prepared can pay big dividends.

In addition to the hurricane supplies tax free holiday, three more tax free events are on the horizon. They include:

  • Back to School Sales Tax Holiday: August 1-3
  • Fitness Club Memberships September 1-8
  • Energy Saving Devices September 19-21
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