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Economy and Business

Calls resume for no state sales tax Labor Day weekend
Ohio retailers are pushing back-to-school sales-tax holiday just as the state's income tax is going up

Karen Kasler
Executive Vice President and CFO Gordon Gough of The Ohio Council of Retail Merchants
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A long weekend of no sales taxes on back-to-school clothes and supplies would save Ohioans money, but Ohio’s retailers say it could be a big economic benefit to the state, too.

The Ohio Council of Retail Merchants commissioned a study on back-to-school shopping last year that estimated Ohio families spend an average of $700.

Gordon Gough is the executive vice president of the Council on Retail Merchants and says Ohioans would have saved $78 million on those purchases, but it pays off for the state, too.

Hear Gough on no state sales tax Labor Day weekend

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“It creates enough other retail activity where the state essentially will be left whole and the benefit would be for the consumers," Gough said. "And it’s our understanding in states, I believe there are 18 other states, that have some form of sales-tax holiday, and they’re seeing increased retail sales for items that are not exempt."

Gough said the average family spending $700 would have saved $40 if the state sales tax were suspended.

A sales tax holiday has been talked about in Ohio before. Retailers are launching a new push with lawmakers for a three-day sales tax holiday proposal to be in place for late summer next year. Ohio's sales tax is climbing Sunday a quarter percent, from 5.5 to 5.75 percent.

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