August 5, 2013

Sales tax holiday too late for some students

From staff, wire reports

— This weekend’s sales tax holiday will come too late for parents in some Georgia school districts, including Dalton and Whitfield County.

Students starting school this week would have to put off their shopping until Friday and Saturday to benefit from the tax break.

The school year starts Thursday in Dalton and Whitfield County school systems. In Murray County, however, the school doors won’t open until Tuesday, Sept. 3.

Several parents told WXIA-TV in Atlanta that they were shopping ahead of the sales tax holiday because it didn’t make sense to split up their shopping trips.

Other parents of students who start earlier in August said they are buying essential supplies now, but holding off on big purchases until next weekend.

In Georgia, businesses won’t charge sales tax next weekend on clothes, shoes, school supplies and computers. There are limits. For example, a pair of shoes and an item of clothing can’t cost more than $100. School supplies can’t cost more than $20 per item, with a $1,000 limit on computers and accessories.

Georgia has had an annual sales tax holiday for more than a decade. There were no sales tax holidays in 2009, 2010 and 2011, when state officials said Georgia couldn’t afford it.

At least 17 states have tax-free periods planned this year, mostly for spending on school items.