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Retailers Gearing Up for a Busy Tax Free Holiday

By Daniel Cherry | Published 28 Jul 2011 06:15pm | comments

Retailers are once again expecting a rush as the tax free holiday begins today. MPB's Daniel Cherry reports how stores and shoppers are gearing up for one of the busiest retail weekends of the year.

All day today and tomorrow shoppers will be able to pick up certain items in Mississippi stores without the usual 7 percent sales tax. Joeseph Hall is manager of the Shoe Department in Flowood. He says if last year is any indicator they're going to have a huge turnout.

"It was madness. The store was full. The cashier lines were down the aisles of the store so people took advantage of the tax savings. I'm hoping this year will be even better than last year."

Hall says they're stocking up on merchandise, and they're opening up an hour earlier both days.

Sally Kauffman from Jackson came out to a shopping center in Flowood Thursday to go ahead and scope out the extra savings.

"You can come out with some really good savings because they've already got sales going on anyway so it's just going to be a busy weekend. We've got to get shoes, some school clothes. We've got a 14 year old and an 11 year old so we need that break and it's worked out good for us."

The event is meant to help parents and children get ready to go back to school. Items on the list include clothes and shoes priced less than 100 dollars, but not school supplies or accessories like neckties or jewelry.

Kathy Waterbury is with the Mississippi Department of Revenue. She says sales tax revenue is still less than it was before the economy tumbled. That makes tracking the impact of the sales tax holiday difficult.

"We have not got back up to where we were three years ago. There was a sharp decline, and we don't know whether to blame some of that on the sales tax holiday or the economy. I think it was the economy. It's really hard for us to say 'This is how much impact it made.'"

The communities of Bolton, Enterprise, Heidelburg, Magnolia, and Crenshaw opted out of the holiday.

Click here for a full list of what will be tax exempt

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