The sales-tax holiday on energy-efficient products starts today, 10/5/07, and will run through Monday, 10/8/07. The official cap on the tax-free purchases is $2,500 and is only good on certain products that bear the Energy Star logo, which denotes that it has received a blessing from the Federal government as being energy-efficient.
Here is a list of products that are eligible, from the VA Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy site:
- Ceiling Fans
- Compact Fluorescent Light bulbs (CFLs)
- Programmable Thermostats
- Room Air Conditioners
- Clothes Washers
Don’t forget that there are also Federal tax credits on certain energy-efficient purchases, regardless of the state sales-tax holiday.
There are quite a few exceptions to the tax-free sales, for example commercial-grade items and computers do not fall under the state program. Similar to the back-to-school sales-tax holiday, individual retailers can opt to pay sales tax for consumers on some products that are not covered officially.
Regardless, this is a great way to kick-start some tax-payers into being energy-efficient without breaking the bank or setting up ongoing subsidies. I applaud the state for enacting the sales-tax holiday.
At the same time, I hope that this does not become a free-for-all in having sales-tax holidays for every pet project that comes along. It’s exciting and newsworthy if there are a couple of sales-tax holidays each year, but the novelty loses its power to drive purchases if there is a sales-tax holiday declared once a month.
See also: Effects of VA Sales Tax Holiday, posted 8/9/06