SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (NEXSTAR) — It’s often the second most expensive time of the year for families, only behind holidays. Back to school season is around the corner, and prices are higher than ever.

“Depending on how many children you have, or just what your budget can contain, and with household things that are all costing a lot more these days as well, rent, Tiffany Mathis-Posey, CEO of Central Illinois Boy’s and Girl’s Club, said. “Things have gone up. It makes it a struggle.”

An annual report released by Deloitte projects the average family will spend close to 600 dollars this year on back to school supplies. The price for supplies like clothes, backpacks, notebooks and pencils have jumped over 20 percent in two years, according to the consumer price index.

And for the first time in three years, there is no tax break coming from the state.

“We were hopeful that they would extend those tax breaks for gas and groceries. Especially during this time our kids are getting ready to go back to school,” Sen. Sally Turner (R-Lincoln) said.

A little bit of the pain was spared the past two years during these shopping trips thanks to a sales tax holiday in Illinois. For 10 days in august, the state lowered the sales tax on back to school supplies from 6.25 Percent to just 1.25 percent. But this year, that didn’t happen.

“I would venture to guess that most of our constituents would like to see something to that nature,”

In the past, the sales tax holiday was looped into a package of tax relief measures. Such as the one in 2021 that was passed because of the pandemic, and the 2022 relief due to high inflation. Non profit groups will try to ease the burden with school supply drives next month.
But even they could benefit from the tax break going forward.

“I’ve been in nonprofit like 20 plus years now, it’s always been a struggle for families with back to school supplies, and it always seems to sneak up on you,” Mathis-Posey said. “I work in the industry. And I’m like, Oh, my gosh, August is next month, like, I haven’t even thinking about school.”