Senate Okays Bill For Local Option On Clothing Sales Tax

James L. Seward

April 04, 2006

The New York State Senate gave final passage Monday to legislation (S.7193A) that gives localities an opportunity to act now to decide whether to eliminate the local share of sales tax on clothing and shoe purchases under $110 or continue collecting the local share of the tax.

"The elimination of the state share of the sales tax on clothing and shoe purchases under $110 was a big victory for families in New York State," Senate Majority Leader Joseph L. Bruno said. "This legislation gives local governments who want to join us by eliminating the local share of the sales tax, an opportunity to do it this spring."

"Now counties have the option of joining the state in lifting sales taxes on shoes and clothing," Senator James L. Seward said. "While it may not feasible for some because of local finances, we have offered counties the choice."

Under current law, if a municipality voted to eliminate the local sales tax share, it would not be effective until March 1, 2007. Under this bill, if a local government passed a resolution by May 15, 2006, the local sales tax would be eliminated on June 1, 2006.

The bill also addresses a specific situation involved 10 counties and four cities that participated in the tax-free weeks program and had previously approved resolutions that committed them to eliminating the local share of the sales tax on clothing and shoes under $110, if the state were to eliminate its share of the tax. As a result, these communities could no longer collect the local tax as of April 1st.

The legislation gives these 14 localities until June 30, 2006 to decide whether they want to reimpose the local share of sales tax. The affect communities include the Counties of Chenango, Columbia, Delaware, Dutchess Greene, Hamilton, Madison, Rensselaer, Tioga and Wayne and the cities of Gloversville, Norwich, Olean and Sherrill.

The bill will be sent to the governor for his consideration.