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Washington Exemptions: New, Extended, and Expired, July 2015


 Many Washington State sales tax exemptions are extended or expired as of July 1, 2015.

Washington State has a budget. As a result, numerous tax changes have taken place.

According to the Washington State Department of Revenue, the following sales and use tax changes took effect on July 1, 2015:

  • "The sales and use tax exemptions for machinery and equipment used directly for the retail sale of a biodiesel blend and E85 motor fuel and fuel delivery vehicles used to distribute such fuels" have expired.
  • "The sales and use tax exemptions for property and services related to electrification systems to power heavy-duty diesel vehicles" have expired.
  • "The sales and use tax exemptions for property and services that enable heavy-duty diesel vehicles to operate with onboard electrification systems" have expired.
  • "The sales and use tax exemptions available to data centers on purchases of server equipment and power infrastructure" are extended:
    • The existing data center sales and use tax exemption on replacement server equipment is extended until April 1, 2024, so long as construction began after April 1, 2012 and before July 1, 2015.
    • "An additional sales and use tax exemption is provided for server equipment and power infrastructure for up to 12 new data centers constructed between July 1, 2015 and July 1, 2025, with some changes from the prior incentive."
  • The sales and use tax exemptions on purchases of wax and ceramic materials used (and purchased) by aluminum smelters to "create molds during the process of creating ferrous and nonferrous investment castings used in industrial application are permanently extended."
  • See information on the exemption from the Washington brokered natural gas use tax.

Green vehicle exemptions

"The sales and use tax exemption for passenger cars, light duty trucks and medium duty passenger vehicles, as well as certain used vehicles, that are exclusively powered by a clean alternative fuel, is extended to July 1, 2019 with the following changes:

  • The exemption is expanded to cover plug-in hybrids that can travel at least 30 miles on battery power alone.
  • The exemption is limited to vehicles with a selling price plus trade-in (or fair market value for leased vehicles) of $35,000 or less (for sales or leases signed after the effective date).
  • Used vehicles may no longer qualify for the exemption.
  • For leases signed before the effective date, lease payments will continue to be exempt regardless of the fair market value of the lease."

Marijuana

Marijuana excise taxes are consolidated. In addition, for the period July 1, 2015 – June 30, 2016 there is a temporary sales and use tax exemption for “marijuana products and low THC products provided by a collective garden to qualifying patients and designated providers, if all are in compliance with chapter 69.51A RCW.” Another sales and use tax exemption will take effect on July 1, 2016 for certain marijuana products.

Additional information is available through the DOR.

The easiest way for businesses to stay on top of sales tax and exemption changes in Washington and other states is to implement an automated solution. Learn how it works.


Sales tax rates, rules, and regulations change frequently. Although we hope you'll find this information helpful, this blog is for informational purposes only and does not provide legal or tax advice.
Gail Cole
Avalara Author
Gail Cole
Gail Cole
Avalara Author Gail Cole
Gail began researching and writing about sales tax in 2012 and has been fascinated with it ever since. She has a penchant for uncovering unusual tax facts, and endeavors to make complex sales tax laws more digestible for both experts and laypeople.