Cumberland Times-News

Opinion

February 9, 2014

It’s tax-free

You can save money, energy with Energy Star

The fifth installment of Shop Maryland Energy, which allows people to buy Energy Star appliances without paying the state’s six percent sales tax, will be held next weekend.

From 12:01 a.m. Feb. 15 to 11:59 p.m. Feb. 17, consumers can save on air conditioners, washers and dryers, furnaces, heat pumps, standard-size refrigerators, compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFL), dehumidifiers and programmable thermostats if they have been identified by the EPA and U.S. Department of Energy as meeting Energy Star requirements.

Consumers benefit by not having to pay Maryland sales tax on an item that may cost several hundred dollars. Also, the Energy Star items they buy will save them even more money in the long run because they will be replacing a less-efficient model with one that uses less energy — which also benefits the environment.

Comptroller Peter Franchot said the program is not only a good deal for consumers, it also helps to “conserve energy, reduce greenhouse gas emissions and reduce future energy expenses, all while simultaneously benefiting Maryland retailers with an increase in sales.”

The program is, of course, good only in Maryland stores — but anyone can participate. A complete list of eligible Energy Star items can be found at www.energystar.gov.

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