BOSTON (WWLP) – The sales tax holiday typically takes place toward the end of the summer. For one weekend a year, Massachusetts residents get a break from the 6.25% sales tax.
Westfield State Senator Don Humason, Westfield State Representative John Velis, and Southwick State Representative Nicholas Boldyga support the sales tax holiday.
Boldyga told 22News the sales tax holiday helps small businesses; “Business owners, not only in western Massachusetts but throughout the state, think the sales tax holiday is crucial to their weekend and get people into their businesses buying things, driving around spending money.”
Many western Massachusetts legislators aren’t prepared to commit to a sales tax holiday just yet, with concerns over the current budget shortfall. The state is currently more than $200-million below benchmark in tax collections with just a few months left in the fiscal year.
Springfield State Representative Bud Williams said, “Since our revenues are not where they should be in projections that we lose revenue to support programs in the commonwealth of Massachusetts and how do we replace the revenue that we lose.”
State lawmakers said the state can’t risk a loss in revenue with the possibility of executive cuts to programs, like health care for the poor, substance abuse services and state parks.
West Springfield State Representative Michael Finn said, “You know it really is a balancing act. There were a lot of local priorities that got 9C’ed by the governor, so we’re hoping to get those things restored.”
Western Massachusetts lawmakers Gailanne Cariddi, Jose Tosado, and Carlos Gonzalez told 22News they’re not sure the state can afford a sales tax holiday this year.
State lawmakers are expected to vote on a sales tax holiday for this year in July.