Severe weather preparedness sales tax holiday set for this weekend

Lora Scripps, The News Courier, Athens, Ala.
·2 min read

Feb. 23—Alabama's 10th severe weather preparedness sales tax holiday begins Friday and ends Sunday.

Gov. Kay Ivey announced Feb. 21 — 26 as Severe Weather Preparedness Week.

Citizens across the state are encouraged to spend the week learning how to get better prepared for severe weather, and shoppers can restock their emergency kits this weekend during the severe weather sales tax holiday.

Limestone County and cities within the county, including Athens, Ardmore and Elkmont, are all participating in the sales tax holiday.

Spring is typically peak tornado season in the state, making now the right time to review severe weather plans and prepare emergency management kits.

Emergency plans should include where to take shelter inside the home during a tornado, where to rendezvous with family if separated during an emergency and where local emergency shelters are located. Families can also use this time to see if their home is in a flood plain and review what to do if a flood occurs.

Emergency kits should contain enough water and nonperishable food to last each family member two to three days, a first-aid kit, flashlight with extra batteries, cash, a whistle, solar- or battery-powered chargers for mobile and other devices, a weather radio and a change of clothes and shoes for each family member. They should also include any prescription medicines, diapers, formula or other special-need items.

Starting 12:01 a.m. Friday, those items and more will become eligible for tax-exemption during Alabama's eighth annual Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday. The following items will be free of state sales tax across Alabama and free of local sales tax in Limestone County, as long as each item is selling for $60 or less:

—AAA-cell, AA-cell, C-cell, D-cell, 6-volt or 9-volt batteries, not including coin batteries and automobile or boat batteries;

—Any cellular phone battery or cellular phone charger;

—Any portable self-power or battery-powered radio, two-way radio, weather-band radio or NOAA weather radio;

—Any portable self-powered light source, including battery-powered flashlights, lanterns or emergency glow sticks;

—Any tarpaulin, plastic sheeting, plastic drop cloths or other flexible, waterproof sheeting;

—Any ground anchor system, such as bungee cords or rope, or a tie-down kit;

—Any duct tape;

—Any plywood, window film or other materials specifically designed to protect window openings;

—Any non-electric food storage cooler or water storage cooler;

—Any non-electric can opener;

—Any artificial ice, blue ice, ice packs or reusable ice;

—Any self-contained first-aid kit;

—Any fire extinguisher, smoke detector or carbon monoxide detector;

—Any gas or diesel fuel tank or container; and

—Any portable generator or power cord used to provide light, provide communications or preserve food in the event of a power outage is also tax-exempt as long as it is sold for $1,000 or less.

Visit www.revenue.alabama.gov to find out more.