RJ: State lawmakers join forces to eliminate ‘pink tax’ in Nevada

Feb 9, 2017
In The News

Two freshman lawmakers want to chip away at the “pink tax” in Nevada in the upcoming Legislature.

Sen. Yvanna Cancela, D-Las Vegas, and Assemblywoman Sandra Jauregui, D-Las Vegas, each introduced legislation in their respective levels of the state Legislature that would cut the taxes on feminine hygiene products such as tampons and sanitary napkins.

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The moves are part of a bigger movement to eliminate the “pink tax,” a term used to refer to the additional money women are often charged for certain services or products.

“Our state government doesn’t view feminine hygiene products as a necessity,” Jauregui said at a news conference Thursday at the Las Vegas office of U.S. Rep. Dina Titus, D-Nev. “These products are not a choice, and they’re definitely not a luxury. They are a required part of being a woman. And the state should not tax us for being a woman.”

The federal government has no control over state sales tax, but Titus is supporting federal measures to eliminate gender-based pay pricing on personal care items, like razors and clothing, that can end up costing more for women.

Nevada is one of 37 states that tax menstrual products. Three states — New York, Illinois and Connecticut — passed legislation last year that made feminine hygiene products tax-exempt.

State Sen. Cancela discusses proposed repeal of "Pink Tax" in Nevada

Las Vegas Review Journal

Cancela, Jauregui and Titus argue that those products should be considered a necessity under the state’s tax code and thus exempt from sales tax, like medicine, food and even soda are in the state.

“It is a common-sense measure that would allow for just a little more money in the pockets of families,” Cancela told the Review-Journal. “As a young women, as someone who has to buy feminine hygiene products every month, I think that it is nonsensical that something that is truly a necessity be taxed at the same rate as other, nonessential commodities.”

Feminine hygiene products are subject to the state’s current 6.85 percent sales tax. When combined with other county taxes, the sales tax reaches 8.15 percent in Clark County.

Cancela’s bill, which is co-sponsored by Sen. Joyce Woodhouse, D-Henderson, would fully repeal the tax on feminine hygiene products. Jauregui’s bill also would completely cut the tax on those products, but it adds a provision for children and adult diapers.

The Legislature starts on Feb. 6.