Diapers and menstrual products will be tax-free in California from now until end of 2021

The bill that has come into effect now is the result of the efforts of Democratic Assemblywomen Lorena Gonzalez of San Diego and Cristina Garcia of Bell Gardens.

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For the next two years, menstrual products and diapers will be tax-free in California thanks to a new law that went into effect on New Year’s Day. Senate Bill 92, which was signed into law on June 27, 2019, and is in effect from now until Dec. 31, 2021, temporarily eliminates sales and use taxes on diapers for infants, toddlers and children, as well as, menstrual hygiene products of the likes of tampons, sanitary napkins, and menstrual cups, and sponges.



According to KTLA, the exemption expires on Jan. 1, 2022, and was approved last June by Gov. Gavin Newsom after including the tax repeal in his state budget. The bill that has come into effect now is the result of the efforts of Democratic Assemblywomen Lorena Gonzalez of San Diego and Cristina Garcia of Bell Gardens, who tirelessly fought for years to end the sales tax on diapers and menstrual products. Unfortunately, their previous attempts to remove the so-called "tampon tax" and "diaper tax" failed to bear fruit with the then-Gov. Jerry Brown vetoing the legislation in 2016 for fiscal reasons and a 2017 proposal failing to make it out of a legislative committee.




Undeterred by the repeated snubs, the pair continued to fight for the cause and reintroduced similar legislation the following year as well seeking a tax exemption through 2024. The two bills—AB 31 and AB 66—are currently listed as active on the state legislature’s website. Speaking to KSWB in San Diego last week, Gonzalez celebrated the new tax repeal saying, "This year, thanks to the support of our governor, we were able to finally repeal the sales tax on children’s diapers — saving the average family $100 a year per child in diaper taxes. Now we work toward making this tax repeal permanent."




According to CBS 17, under SB92, "diapers that are designed, manufactured, processed, fabricated, or packaged for use by infants, toddlers, and children," and "menstrual hygiene products meaning tampons, sanitary napkins primarily designed and labeled for menstrual hygiene use, menstrual sponges, and menstrual cups" will be tax-free. Meanwhile, anyone who has been taxed on those items since January 1 can approach their retailer with a receipt and request a refund. They will also need a copy of a notice from the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration. 



California families celebrated the news of tax-free diapers, with one parent saying, "That’s amazing. Diapers are expensive, so it helps." Jeanne Hansen, the director of pregnancy and family resource center Birthline in Clairemont and Chula Vista, stated that the tax exemption will be beneficial for families both with regards to their child's health and the entire family's wellbeing. "Any amount of money that they don’t have to spend on diapers is money they spend on other things, like rent, transportation, things like that for their children," said Hansen.



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