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Hurricane holiday offers tax savings

Safety officials are suggesting residents prepare themselves for the upcoming hurricane season by participating in Virginia’s annual Hurricane Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday May 25-31.

Residents can take advantage of the tax holiday by stocking up on supplies protecting their homes and businesses.

Hurricane season starts June 1 and ends around Nov. 30 each year.

“One of the best things you can do is prepare yourself and your family,” said Halifax County Emergency Services Coordinator Kirby Saunders.

“Preparedness is critically important year round, and we all have a role to play.”

Hurricane preparedness items costing less than $60 and exempt from the retail sales and use tax May 25-31 include:

Artificial ice, blue ice, ice packs and reusable ice 

 Batteries, excluding automobile or boat batteries 

 Portable self-powered light sources

 Tarpaulins and other flexible waterproof sheeting

 Bungee cords

 Ratchet straps

 Smoke detectors

 Fire extinguishers

 Gas, diesel fuel tanks or containers

 Bottled water

 Portable self-powered radios

 Two-way radios

 Storm shutter devices

 Cell phone chargers

 First aid kits

Items costing less than $1,000 and exempt from the tax include portable generators and generator power cords and inverters and inverter power cables.

Gas-powered chain saws with a selling price of $350 or less and chain saw accessories with a sales price of $60 or less can be purchased exempt of the retail sales and use tax from May 25-31.

Chain saw accessories exempt from the tax include:

 Chains

 Chain saw bar and nose lubricants

 Two-cycle motor oil

 Chain sharpener and files

 Bars

 Wrenches

 Carrying cases and scabbards

 Safety apparel such as chaps, gloves, hearing protectors, helmets and protective glasses

 Repair parts

The Virginia Department of Taxation’s Hurricane Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines and Rules are available online at www.tax.virginia.gov/site.cfm?alias=HurricanePreparednessEquipmentHoliday. 

For additional information on hurricane preparation, visit the Virginia Department of Emergency Management website at www.vaemergency.gov.