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Herald-Mail: Tax breaks return in Maryland for energy-saving appliances (VIDEO)
January 30, 2018
Video available at https://www.heraldmailmedia.com/news/local/maryland-comptroller-peter-franchot/video_65aa2f4c-0620-11e8-917d-b7055cf117f6.html
Curt Spicher said Shop Maryland Energy weekend is good for the environment, shoppers and businesses like his.
During the weekend, set for Feb. 17 to 19 this year, consumers get a break from Maryland's sales tax on qualifying Energy Star appliances, from air conditioners to washing machines.
"It's Saturday and Monday for us," said Spicher, noting that his business, Spichers Appliances & Electronics on Pennsylvania Avenue, is closed Sundays. "It's two of our biggest days of the year. It's real exciting for us.
"The tax-free savings is something you can't get any other time, which is 6 percent, which is significant. But we've also worked again with our manufacturers to drive even harder bargains with some extra rebates and extra savings that you just can't get other times of the year."
In addition, Potomac Edison offers rebates of its own on the energy-efficient appliance.
As he has done in the past, Maryland Comptroller Peter Franchot came to Spichers on Tuesday to promote Shop Maryland Energy. He and Spicher were joined by three county commissioners — Terry Baker, John Barr and Jeff Cline — along with some other county officials and representatives of Potomac Edison.
"It's good news for consumers," Franchot said of Shop Maryland Energy.
Combining the tax savings, plus deals from manufacturers and energy company discounts, "you can save up to 20 percent on a big item," he said. "So it adds up. We're out here promoting it because it supports these wonderful family-owned businesses."
This year, he said, Maryland consumers will have a little more money to spend.
On Thursday, Franchot's office released an estimate showing that the reform bill passed by Congress will mean a federal income-tax cut of more than $2.8 billion for Maryland residents in tax year 2018.
"In addition to that, we've just started our own tax refund for this year, and that's going to be another $3 billion," he said. "So I believe 2018 is going to be a great year for retailers because so much disposable income is being put into the consumers' pockets."
The long-term effects of the federal tax changes remains to be seen, he said.
After leaving Spichers, Franchot was to stop by his agency's new call center on Franklin Street in downtown Hagertsown. When fully staffed, the office will employ about a dozen people answering calls from across the state.