Eyeglasses may be exempt from state sales tax, lawmaker says

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.

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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.

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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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