Shoppers who are looking for bargains on back-to-school purchases don't have to travel far. Monett is the only city in the bi-county area participating in the Sales Tax Holiday.
By state law, the holiday begins the first Friday in August and continues through the following Sunday. This year, the holiday begins at midnight on Friday, Aug. 7 and runs through Sunday, Aug. 9.
During this time period, the state's 4.225 percent sales tax will not be assessed on certain purchases made in Missouri. In addition, Monett will be foregoing its 1.75 percent sales tax for those three days as well.
Monett has participated in the holiday since its inception, and despite a tighter budget this year, city leaders decided to continue giving shoppers a break on local sales tax.
"We wanted to give a break to consumers and maybe provide a boost to our local businesses, especially since Springfield and Joplin and other nearby cities aren't participating," said Monett City Administrator Dennis Pyle.
Local governments have the option to opt out of the holiday by a vote of their councils or commissions, and many municipalities have taken this route. A list of cities and counties who have out of the holiday can be found at http://dor.mo.gov/tax/business/sales/tax....
Sales tax will not be charged on the following items that are purchased this weekend:
* Clothing that does not have a value of more than $100. This includes footwear, traditional apparel and material purchased to make school uniforms or clothes. It does not include accessories.
* School supplies, not exceeding $50 per purchase, that are used in a standard classroom for educational purposes.
* Personal computers that don't cost more than $3,500 and computer peripheral devices that don't exceed $3,500. Computer software is considered a school supply and is free from sales tax if its value is less than $50.
"The Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday will be an excellent time for families to buy the school supplies their children need for the upcoming school year," said Governor Jay Nixon. "During these times every dollar counts. It makes sense to save as much money as possible, and this holiday provides an excellent opportunity to accomplish that goal."
Downtown Monett merchants are holding a sidewalk sale in conjunction with the Sales Tax Holiday on Friday, Aug. 7 and Saturday, Aug. 8. For a list of participating businesses, see page 12 of today's newspaper.