Back-to-school sales tax holiday underway in Virginia

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (WJLA) - Virginia's annual back-to-school sales tax holiday is in full swing.

The tax break started Friday and runs through Sunday. Shoppers at retail stores statewide won't have to pay sales tax on notebooks, pens, calculators, binders and other school supplies priced up to $20.

Kim Humphrey calls the tax-free weekend a time to divide and conquer. She spent about an hour buying supplies for her three daughters.{ }

"I actually waited until today to get the supplies," she says.{ }

The Upper Marlboro resident drove to Alexandria so she could take advantage of the tax-free weekend.{ }

According to the National Retail Federation, parents will spend on average $635 this year, down about 8 percent from last year. Part of the reason, the NRF says, is because families are still uneasy about the economy, and numbers show{ }many consumers already purchased a significant amount of supplies last year.{ }

“We have our list and they don’t seem to be too long this year,” Kim Robbert says.{ }

Robbert was also taking advantage of the weekend.

“I wasn’t working and given that it’s tax-free we’d figure Friday was a better day than Saturday to be tax-free.”

Shoes and most clothing items priced up to $100 also will be exempt.

The Department of Taxation has a list of eligible items and guidelines. For a list of those items, click here.

The Associated Press contributed to this story.