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In a move to support pet owners who are already struggling with the high costs of taking care of their animals, Representative William W. O’Brien, a Democrat representing District 54 in North Providence, has introduced a bill to the Rhode Island General Assembly to exempt animal food and supplies from the state’s sales and use taxes. The proposed legislation numbered 2023-H 5476, aims to keep costs down for pet owners who are already struggling to make ends meet.

“Times are tough for so many these days and most people are already making tough decisions on what they can afford and what they can live without.  With that being said, discussions about the ability to care for and feed one’s pet should not be up for debate and this bill will keep costs down for these vital products that keep our pets alive and well,” said Representative O’Brien in a statement.

If the legislation is passed, it would exempt animal supplies, food, and related products from Rhode Island’s sales and use taxes on gross receipts. The bill has been referred to the House Finance Committee for review.

If passed into law, Rhode Island would join several other states, including New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey, that have already implemented similar tax exemptions for animal supplies and food.

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