Eyeglasses may be exempt from state sales tax, lawmaker says

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Eyeglasses may be exempt from state sales tax, lawmaker says

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Barbara J. Perenic
Ohioans may get a small break on the cost of eyeware, thanks to a deal struck by lawmakers to exempt eyeglasses and contact lenses from state sales taxes. BARBARA J. PERENIC/STAFF

Ohioans may soon get a tax break when buying prescription eye glasses and contact lenses. Lawmakers struck a deal to exempt corrective eye wear from state sales taxes, according to state Rep. Derek Merrin.

Merrin, R-Monclova Twp. near Toledo, announced that lawmakers in the House and Senate agreed to roll the sales tax break into an existing bill that is expected to win approval.

If the measure becomes law, Ohioans will save roughly $29 million a year in taxes now paid on prescription glasses and corrective lenses, he said.

The Ohio Optometric Association supports the deal. “Economic barriers, such as the imposition of a sales tax, make it less likely for patients to obtain the care and medical products they need,” the association said in support of the bill.

Only 13 other states apply a tax on prescription eye wear, according to Merrin.

Hearing aides, prescription drugs and other medical aides are already exempt from the sales tax.

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