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May 21, 2021

Save and Prepare this Hurricane Season + More Sales Tax Holidays

By Laura Byrne

Oh, boy! Here we are again. The 2021 Atlantic Hurricane season returns June 1-November 30 and it’s predicted to be more active than usual.  

This is the time to make sure your disaster preparedness kits are fully stocked. You should also take the time to research which zone you live in and that you have an evacuation plan in place should you zone be ordered to evacuate. Where will you go and how will you get there? Keep in mind that you don’t have to evacuate hundreds of miles away; sometimes tens of miles are all you need to get to a safe structure on higher ground. 

For families, the Disaster Preparedness Kit might look a bit different with plenty of diapers and wipes, games and activities for the kids that don’t require electricity, baby food, and any other items your child may need like medications and first aid. 

Other mustinclude items for families 

  • Drinking water for one week: 1 gallon per person, per day 
  • Food: enough non-perishable food to last 7 days (can opener if needed) 
  • Food utensils, paper plates and napkins  
  • Sanitation supplies like wipes, cleaning products and trash bags 
  • Battery powered radio (cell phones and TV may not be reliable after a storm) 
  • Portable chargers 
  • Flashlight 
  • Two weeks supply of all medication and supplies 
  • First Aid Kit 
  • Important documents like insurance and medical cards, birth certificates and bank info (keep in waterproof container) 
  • Pet care items and I.D.s 
  • Keep your vehicles filled with gas 
  • Learn more about what you should have in your kit here.

Looking to save as you stock up? There’s an upcoming sales tax holiday for that… In fact, Florida has three sales tax holidays to help you save this summer!

Disaster Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday: May 28, June 6, 2021 

The Disaster Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday which runs May 28-June 6 will give you a break on sales tax on some supplies like flashlights and lanterns less than $15, radios $50 or less, tarps less than $100 and batteries that are $50 or less. Generators less than $1,000 also qualify for the sales tax break during the holiday.

You can see a complete list of what qualifies here on the Florida Department of Revenue’s site. 

Freedom Week Sales Tax Holiday: July 1-July 7, 2021

Next on the sales tax-relief pipeline is the Freedom Week Sales Tax Holiday which runs July 1-July 7. You’ll get a sales tax break on purchases of admission to music events, sporting events, cultural events, state park annual passes and fitness facilities. You’ll also get a break on certain outdoorrelated supplies including: 

Camping Supplies: First $200 of a tent and first $50 of sleeping bags, hammocks, camping stoves and camping chairs
Fishing Supplies:  First $75 of fishing rods and reels, first $30 of a tackle box and first $5 on bait and tackle. 

Boating and Water Safety Supplies: First $75 of life jackets and coolers; first $50 for safety flares; first $150 of water skis, wakeboards, kneeboards and inflatable/towable water tubes or floats; first $300 of paddleboards and surfboards; first $500 of canoes and kayaks; first $25 of snorkels, goggles and swimming masks. 

Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday: July 31-August 9, 2021 

And finally, the Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday returns July 31-Aug. 9. Just like previous years, you’ll get a sales tax break on clothing items, backpacks and footwear that are $60 or less, school supplies $15 or less, and the first $1,000 of a personal computers and personal computer related items. 

A great time to take advantage of the Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday is during our Back to School Fair at WestShore Plaza on July 31 from 10 am -2 pm. We’ll have live performances, giveaways, and 60 local businesses and organizations on hand ready to talk to answer any questions you may have and live performances and giveaways. 

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