If you’ve had your eye on a new refrigerator or washing machine, you’ll want to think about making a purchase this week. This is the second year for Missouri’s “Green Sales Tax Holiday.” 

April 19th through the 25th, any qualifying appliance purchased in Missouri will automatically be tax-free, saving people more than 4% state wide. They’re appliances that have an ‘Energy Star’ label on them, but it doesn’t work for things like a new flat-screen TV.

Department of Revenue spokesman Ted Farnen says what is eligible is spelled out in state legislation.

“Those that do qualify are clothes washers, refrigerators, freezers, dishwashers, water heaters, furnaces, air conditioners and heat pumps,” Farnen said.

On top of that, eight counties and 51 cities are also waiving their local taxes on the approved appliances. Farnen says many of those are in areas around state borders, because you don’t have to be a Missouri resident to get the item tax-free. The local entities hope to bring in people from out of state who hopefully buy other things while they’re here, too. But Farnen says even if they’re town’s not participating Missourians might not have to travel far to get the extra savings.

“For example we had our kick off for this in Columbia which the city of Columbia has decided not to waive the (local) sales tax during this period and that’s fine that’s their decision but some of the appliance dealers are saying we’ll give you a credit for the sales tax we still have to charge under law,” Farnen said.

Despite tough budgetary times at the Capitol, this program was not cut this year. Farnen says it’s hard to calculate how much money was saved by consumers last year, or how much was lost by the state, depending on your view.

“The green sales tax holiday will occur the same time April 19th-25th every year unless the legislature decides to rescind the authorizing legislation. This was not a one-time thing,” Farnen said.

The sales tax exemption only applies to the first $1,500 on each appliance. For more information on the tax holiday, visit the Department of Revenue’s website.

Meantime, the Department of Natural Resources is also launching a program this week offering government rebates on eligible appliances. Farnen says it’s likely some of the products may overlap, so it’s possible to get both benefits on the same purchase. However, there are additional requirements and an application process for the DNR program, while the green sales tax holiday’s benefits are seen immediately at the register this week.

AUDIO: Ryan Famuliner reports (:63 mp3)