The meals tax will not be included as part of Massachusetts’ upcoming tax-free weekend after all.
The change was made at the request of Gov. Charlie Baker and restaurant owners who were concerned about their ability to implement a two-day tax holiday, and whether the cost of trying would outweigh any benefit.
Bob Luz, the president the Massachusetts Restaurant Association, told the State House News Service that restaurants don’t have the capability when applying taxes to a check to separate food, which would have been exempt for the weekend, from alcohol, which would not.
“I think at the end of the day when everybody realized what had happened, the governor quite honestly had one of two options, either include alcohol or don’t,” Luz said.
Baker opted to exclude meals from the tax holiday, consistent with how the holiday has worked for many years and it has been approved by the House and Senate, State House News reports.
The sales tax holiday weekend has been scheduled for Aug. 17 and 18.
The sales tax holiday applies to individuals purchasing retail items for personal use only. Purchases by corporations or other businesses—or purchases by individuals for business use—remain taxable.
The Mass Department of Revenue has posted frequently asked questions here. Or call (617) 887-6367 (Select #4 for sales tax.)