Taking an economic holiday

At a time when we’re all waiting for the economy to bounce back, it’s good to see a welcome respite coming up on the horizon.

All Shelby County citizens can forget about state and local sales taxes by taking advantage of the sales tax holiday from 12:01 a.m. on Aug. 7 until midnight Aug. 9.

The sales tax holiday covers purchases of clothing, school supplies, computers, computer equipment and books.

This will be a great weekend for parents of school-age children, who have probably been putting off back-to-school shopping just to get the tax-free deals. However, this weekend will benefit other citizens as well, because it doesn’t just apply to those who have children or grandchildren in school.

If you’ve had your eye on that new computer and software but couldn’t afford it, this might be the time to buy. The same goes for those needing a new wardrobe for that first job.

This is the fourth year for the sales tax holiday in Alabama, and we know the holiday works. Sales for August 2008 were up 24 percent over sales in August 2005, when there wasn’t a sales tax holiday.

The holiday is a boon for local shoppers looking to save a little money, and it’s a big help for Shelby County businesses trying to get customers in the doors — especially since Jefferson and Chilton counties aren’t participating in the sales tax holiday this year.