Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday is Feb. 21 to 23

MONTGOMERY – From Friday, Feb. 21, to Sunday, Feb. 23, Alabama will observe the state’s ninth annual Severe Weather Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday. The Alabama Retail Association encourages Alabamians to restock emergency supplies in homes, workplaces and vehicles during this three-day tax holiday. Certain emergency preparedness items will be exempt from the state’s 4-percent state sales tax, and in some cities and counties, local taxes are waived on those items as well. The tax holiday means shoppers can save as much as 10 percent on these items in some areas of the state.

To see if your communities have decided to participate, click on the 2020 Participating Cities and Counties link.

From 12:01 a.m. Feb. 21 to midnight Feb. 23, the tax-exempt items include the following priced at $60 or less:

  • Flashlights, lanterns
  • Battery-powered or hand-crank radio
  • Batteries
  • First-aid kits
  • Cell phone charger
  • Two-way radios
  • Manual can openers
  • Tarps and plastic sheeting
  • Duct tape
  • Fire extinguishers
  • Tie-down kits, bungee cords or rope

Other tax-free items include: Coolers, ice packs, plywood, window film and smoke/fire/carbon monoxide detectors. Portable generators and power cords costing $1,000 or less are also tax free.

>> Full list of tax-free items

>> Severe weather preparedness sales tax holiday page at

Alabama is one of three states with a severe weather preparedness sales tax holiday in 2020; the other states with similar holidays are Texas and Virginia.

Severe weather can occur at any time, in any season,” said Alabama Retail President Rick Brown. “The tax holiday helps Alabama consumers remember to stock and prepare emergency kits to be ready when storms strike.”

Local hardware stores such as Greenville Hardware are among the Alabama retailers stocked with emergency preparedness items for the tax holiday, Greenville Hardware owner James H. Dunklin IV, great-grandson of the founder, recommends stocking up on emergency supplies while the items are tax free.

The largest month we’ve ever had in the history of the store since I’ve owned it” came after the 100 mph winds of Hurricane Ivan ripped through Greenville in September 2004, said Dunklin, who has owned the downtown store since 2003. “We are only two hours from the Gulf,” so when a major hurricane comes through, “it’s pretty bad here,” he said.

>> Other possible local hardware store sources for the tax holiday:
Mary Carter Store, Cullman; Rocky Ridge Hardware, Vestavia Hills;
Consolidated Ace Hardware, Dothan and Ozark;
and Holley True Value, Selma: 

Alabama Retail recommends having enough supplies in emergency kits to last 72 hours following a disaster. For information on what items to include in emergency kits, as well as steps to take before and after disasters, visit

>> Learn more at
>> Sales Tax Holiday Printable Poster

Originally posted 3:13 p.m. Feb. 6, 2020

The Alabama Retail Association represents retailers, the largest private employer in the state of Alabama, before the Alabama Legislature and the U.S. Congress. Through sales of food, clothing, furniture, medicine and more, our 4,300 independent merchant and national company members touch almost every aspect of daily living. Since 1943, we’ve worked to promote what’s best for the retail industry in Alabama. Whether voicing the retail view when public policy is made, educating members about issues that impact them, negotiating rates for benefits and services or communicating the retail story, the Alabama Retail Association and its members are better together.

Nancy King Dennis | 334.551.0643 | 334.868.2195 (c)| 800.239.5423

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