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New York State Senate votes to end the ‘Tampon Tax’

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The New York State Senate passed a bill on Wednesday that would exempt many basic and necessary women’s items from being taxed.

The bill passed unanimously in the Senate and would exempt feminine hygiene products such as sanitary napkins, tampons, and panty liners from the New York’s sales and compensating use tax.

Currently, medicine, medical equipment, supplies to correct or alleviate physical incapacity, and products consumed by humans for the preservation of health are included in the list of items exempt from the sales and use tax.

However, cosmetics and toiletry items are explicitly excluded from the list unless they contain medicinal ingredients. Feminine hygiene products are among those items considered taxable under state law, despite being a necessity for women.

This bill would add sanitary napkins, tampons, and panty liners to the items exempt from retail taxes to make the existing law fairer, especially for women. New York will join several states including Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania who have already passed similar legislation to end the so-called “Tampon Tax.”

The bill will be sent to the Governor Cuomo, who is expected to sign the legislation into law. In a statement, Cuomo said, “Repealing this regressive and unfair tax on women is a matter of social and economic justice, and I commend Assembly Member Rosenthal and Senator Serino for their strong advocacy on this measure. I look forward to signing it into law.”

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