Reno residents react to proposed elimination of sales tax on tampons & diapers

Playtex box

Several Nevada lawmakers are drafting legislation that would reduce or eliminate sales tax on feminine hygiene products and diapers.

Sandra Jauregui is the assemblywoman behind one of the measures. If she has it her way, Nevadans will no longer have to pay sales tax when they buy those items.

Jauregui said, "we currently don't tax food. We don't tax medical equipment. We don't tax candy or soda pop. There's no reason women should be paying this tax."

She believes Nevadans shouldn't be taxed on necessities. "It's not a choice. We don't choose to be a woman. We don't choose to have to buy these items."

Sales tax for a box of tampons is usually less than a dollar, but Jauregui said, "it adds up over time."

Most women end up paying hundreds of dollars in sales tax on tampons and pads over the course of their lifetime. "Every little cent counts." Reno resident Amberleigh Thompson said, "it's not really anyone's fault that they need these things, so the taxes are not, just not fair."

In fact, all of the people our crew approached agreed with eliminating the sales tax on feminine hygiene products and diapers. Anna Salcedo of Reno said, "I think it's wonderful because it's going to help a lot of moms, especially single parents."

But it wasn't just women who were on board with the idea. "I think it would be excellent because it's a product that every female uses monthly." With two young children, Felipe Gonzalez said eliminating the sales tax on diapers would save his family a good chunk of change.

While Assemblywoman Jauregui's bill aims to save Nevadans money, she said she's also drafting the measure to stand up for women. "Women in Nevada only make about 85 cents to every dollar a man makes."

With a Nevada legislature that is 40 percent female, Reno residents are hopeful the law will pass. Salcedo said, "I hope it happens for us; for the women."

If Jauregui's bill passes in both the assembly and the senate, it will go to Governor Sandoval's desk. However, even if Sandoval approves the law, the sales tax elimination would still be on the 2018 ballot because it would require a constitutional amendment

Two Nevada senators, including Yvanna Cancela are bringing a similar bill to the upcoming legislative session. It would reduce the sales tax on feminine hygiene products to just 2 percent. If passed, their law would not require a constitutional amendment.

Assemblywoman Jauregui said she's glad measures are being proposed in both houses of the legislature because it increases the chances of a new law taking effect that would reduce the cost of products she calls "necessary" for Nevadans.

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