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N.Y. CITY SHOPPERS TO GET TEMPORARY SALES-TAX BREAK

Back-to-school shoppers looking for deals get a sales-tax break the first week of September -- another stab by Mayor Rudolph Giuliani to persuade legislators to wipe out the sales tax entirely.

From Sept. 1-7, the city's 8.25 percent sales tax will be waived on most clothing and shoes costing less than $500, Giuliani said.

Beginning Dec. 1, 1999, the sales tax will be eliminated on clothing and shoes costing less than $110 under a law passed by the state Legislature.

Giuliani launched tax-free weeks in 1997 to stem the flow of shoppers to New Jersey, where there is no tax on clothing and food. City officials estimated the city loses $700 million a year in clothing sales because of shoppers going out of state.

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