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New sales tax exemption for New York veterans


 Peace, symbolized by poppies, will grow out of the ruins of war.

A new state sales and use tax exemption for certain tangible personal property manufactured and sold by a veterans is set to take effect in New York on March 1, 2017.

The exemption applies to the first $2,500 of receipts from sales of Veteran’s memorial poppy flowers made and sold by qualifying veterans “for the benefit of a veteran’s service organization, provided that such person or any member of his or her household does not conduct a trade or business in which similar items are sold. Specifically, the bill exempts from sales tax such costs associated with assembling and distributing this perpetual symbol of peace.”

The sponsor memo of the bill (Senate Bill 4986) justifies the exemption as follows:

“The poppy flower has long been a symbol used for honoring American soldiers who died bravely fighting for their country. The commonplace practice of wearing poppies on Veteran's day originates from the 1915 poem "In Flanders Fields," written by John McCrea, during World War I. The poppy is a constant reminder that through the devastation of war, peace will eventually return, such as the poppy flowers grew on the war ravaged fields of World War I.

In 1922 the VFW conducted its first poppy distribution and in 1923 the VFW decided that the poppies would be assembled by disabled and needy veterans, who would be paid for their work to provide them with financial assistance and this tradition has endured.”

Senate Bill 4986 is one of nine bills considered by the New York legislature “to provide important benefits and recognition to veterans and their families.” To date, three of these bills have been signed by the governor.

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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.