This weekend, shop ’til you drop

Published 12:00 am Sunday, August 8, 2004

Nobody likes to pay taxes, but at least for one weekend, you won’t have to fork over an additional 7.5 percent of your purchases on certain items.

North Carolina will celebrate its third Sales Tax Holiday beginning Friday, August 6 and ending Sunday, August 8. During this weekend, certain items are free from state sales tax.

As in past years, retailers can anticipate heavy traffic and highly elevated sales as consumers shop for bargains, especially on back-to-school items. Sales tax will be waived for items such as clothing, computers and school supplies.

&uot;This weekend’s sales tax holiday will help North Carolina families better prepare their children for the start of school so they’re able to enter the classroom ready to learn,&uot; said North Carolina State House of Representative Howard Hunter Jr. of Hertford County, a proponent of the sales tax holiday upon its creation in 2002 by the General Assembly.

Rep. Hunter continued, &uot;Friday through Sunday will be a great opportunity for families to save some money on necessary back-to-school supplies while also supporting our local businesses. I hope that all residents of District 5 (including Bertie, Gates and Hertford counties) will take advantage of this opportunity.&uot;

During the &uot;shoppers’ delight&uot; weekend, consumers will be exempt from paying sales tax on clothing (costing less than $100 per item), most school supplies and some sporting goods equipment (priced at $50 or less per item). In addition, computers (less than $3,500 per item) are free from sales tax from Aug. 6-8.

However, in a switch from previous years, the North Carolina Department of Revenue has changed its taxation rules for computer software and peripherals, such as printers. Those items (printers, printer supplies and educational software) are no longer exempt from sales tax during the period. On the other hand, consumers will not pay sales tax on a monitor, keyboard, mouse and speakers when purchased with a computer.