Tennessee sales tax holiday is this weekend

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- This year's tax-free holiday weekend in Tennessee began at 12:01 a.m Friday and ends Sunday at 11:59 p.m.

Tax-free items include clothing with a price of $100 or less per item, school and school art supplies with a price of $100 or less per item, and computers with a price of $1,500 or less.

The holiday also includes purchases of qualified items sold via mail, telephone, e-mail, or Internet if the customer orders and pays for the item and the retailer accepts the order during the holiday for immediate shipment, even if delivery is made after the exemption period.

Walmart in Alcoa was packed with people stocking up on school supplies Friday.

"I got pencils, erasers, highlighters, and a binder," said Sarah Whitehead, an 8-year-old.

"Folders, pencils, crayons, paper, pencil box," said Teresa Casteel, who was buying supplies for her son.

Casteel said she waited until this weekend to shop because there are no taxes on clothing and school supplies under $100 or on computers under $1500.

"Every little bit helps," she said.

Walmart said people started pouring in at midnight, and the store has been busy ever since:

"We see a huge amount of traffic in apparel and of course in stationary, and then of course back in electronics with laptops and tablets," said Boyce Smith, Walmart's Store Manager in Alcoa.

That's where Kelsey Sellers spent a lot of time Friday morning.

"We just decided to come shopping to get me a computer because mine broke and this was the best weekend to get it," said Sellers.

The Foothills Mall was packed, too. Stephanie Tipton and her sons said they started early to beat the rush.

"We're getting everything - we're getting clothing, supplies, socks, shoes, folders, binders," said Tipton.

For those buying school supplies for multiple children, the sales tax holiday makes a big difference.

"I waited until this weekend so that my money can go a little further and a long way for tax-free weekend," said Virginia Hollis.

Now Hollis' grandchildren will be ready to hit the books in style.

Tennessee Code Annotated 67-6-393 established sales tax holidays in Tennessee in 2006. The holiday is held every year on the first Friday in August and ends the following Sunday night.

The first Sales Tax Holiday was August 4-6, 2006, saving Tennesseans about $15 million. Since then, Tennesseans have enjoyed $8 to $10 million in tax savings each holiday.

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