Rhode Island lawmakers renew effort to end the tampon tax

February 23, 2019 GMT

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Lawmakers in Rhode Island are renewing their efforts to exempt feminine hygiene products from the state sales tax.

A bill that would eliminate the tax on tampons and pads has been introduced in the House by Democratic Rep. Edith Ajello and in the Senate by Democratic Sen. Louis DiPalma. Both sponsors have filed the bills since 2016 and their measures have stalled.

Other states have already passed similar exemptions, including neighboring Massachusetts and Connecticut.

Ajello, of Providence, says taxing these products makes a regular necessity more expensive, and amounts to a tax on being a woman.

DiPalma says the products should be exempted from the tax as a necessity, like food and clothing.

They say the state collects 44 cents on a box of 36 tampons costing $6.29.