Tax-free holiday starts Friday

Published 5:06 pm Tuesday, July 31, 2012

This weekend, shoppers in the Greenville area will be able to breathe a little easier at registers across the county.

Thanks to a resolution passed earlier this June by the Greenville City Council, the city will be enjoying its seventh sales tax holiday in as many years.

The holiday, which is scheduled to last between 12:01 a.m. on Friday and midnight on Sunday, will cover clothing items less than $100, certain school supplies, computers and books.

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Executive director of the Greenville Area Chamber of Commerce Francine Wasden knows that this holiday has been a huge help in the past, and thinks the timing couldn’t be better to save.

“It’s the perfect time to take advantage of this, especially if you’ve got several children starting off,” Wasden said. “It can get rather expensive.”

Wasden also debunked the common misconception that revenue isn’t made during the weekend.

“When people come to town, they think we’re losing money because we’re not charging money,” Wasden said. “But they’re going to see something else that they like that this sale probably will not apply to. “

Wasden is confident that there will be revenue, but the most important thing for her is that people participate in the first place.

“More than anything, it’s going to bring people out in the community,” she said. “We’re hoping people are going to shop locally, and consider how these dollars that they are spending are going to help their local community.”

Greenville’s Walmart Supercenter will likely be at or near the top of several consumers’ priority lists, and the management knows it.

James Packer, site manager of Greenville’s Walmart Supercenter, has prepared for the impending rush of thrifty consumers. But mostly, he’s happy that Walmart is able to be a positive force in the community.

“The whole mantra behind Walmart is to save money and live better, so any time we can partner with the government and the community, we’re happy to,” Packer said. “The biggest and most important thing we can do here is to provide the shopping materials needed to educate our young people.”

Packer said that they plan for an estimated 12 to 14 percent in sales this weekend, and that the majority of it may come from an unexpected source.

“School uniforms take off in particular,” Packer said. “Kids grow during the entire year, and I don’t know any one kid that stays in the same-sized uniform throughout the year.”