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BOSTON -- Massachusetts' large pharmacy chains abruptly announced last week that they no longer will charge consumers a new tax on prescriptions levied by the state.
The tax, set at $1.30 per prescription, took effect Jan. 1. Most of the state's pharmacy operators asked customers to pay the tax, but had expressed dismay at being put in the middle of the state's budget crisis.
Walgeens, CVS and Wal-Mart no longer will collect the tax and will provide a refund to those pharmacy customers who paid the tax. Stop & S hop Supermarket Co. reported it would "suspend collection" of the tax. Brooks Pharmacy also has stopped collecting the tax, according to reports. A …