Merchants gear up for tax-free holiday

Published 9:48 am Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Debbie Daughtery, owner of New Life Resale Boutique in downtown Franklin, will have a sidewalk sale on Saturday during the state’s annual back-to-school sales tax holiday. -- DALE LIESCH | TIDEWATER NEWS

FRANKLIN—New Life Resale Boutique owner Debbie Daughtery hopes Virginia’s three-day tax-free holiday will help her unload an abundance of children’s clothes at her secondhand store in Franklin.

In addition to saving 5 percent on sales tax from Friday, Aug. 5, through Sunday, Aug. 7, shoppers can save an additional 25 to 30 percent on kids’ clothing at Daughtery’s 115 Main St. store.

“I thought it’d be good, with school starting and the economy the way it is, to help people save money,” she said. “Hopefully, we’ll be able to sell some clothes and help people out.”

Shoppers will not have to pay taxes on clothing, footwear, school supplies and some electronics. Tax-exempt clothing must be $100 or less while school supplies must be $20 or less.

Virginia also held a tax-free holiday from May 25-31 on items to help folks out during a hurricane. Tax-free items included portable generators priced at $1,000 or less and other individual items priced at $60 or less.

From Oct. 7-10, products meeting the Energy Star and WaterSense qualifications, such as certain energy-efficient appliances, will be exempt from the Virginia sales tax. Eligible products must be priced at $2,500 or less.

As for the upcoming holiday, Belk will open an hour early at 9 a.m. Saturday. The Armory Drive store in Franklin is running $10-off coupons when spending $50, $20-off for $100 and $30-off for $150.

“We would love to be pretty busy,” said Amy Apaliski, area sales manager for Belk. “We expect people to take advantage of the sales tax holiday.”

Shoe Show on Armory Drive in the Walmart plaza also will offer specials.

Manager Elaine Banks said shoes will start at $14.99. The store is preparing for what could be a big weekend.

“We have a lot of different things on sale,” Banks said. “We’ve got a lot of new freight in as well.”