Job fair for vets, tax-free weekend ends, Grillerz closing

Jul. 28, 2013 @ 05:00 AM

Take advantage of the Sales Tax Holiday shopping this coming Friday-Sunday — it could be the last time you’ll be able to in North Carolina.

Several years ago, the state exempted all back-to-school purchases from sales tax during one weekend in August. But now that the GOP majorities in the N.C. House and Senate have successfully revamped the state’s tax code, they cut Tax Free Weekend for the foreseeable future.

North Carolinians save an estimated $14.7 million each year on taxes during this weekend. The General Assembly did away with it because it needs to maximize revenue after instituting its plan to cut personal and corporate income taxes and raise sales taxes. As with anything coming out of the legislature these days, opinions are divided. The Daily Tar Heel quoted Douglas Shackelford, a professor at UNC-Chapel Hill’s Kenan-Flagler Business School, saying that ending the holiday could increase revenues for the state because people will still shop.

“You can just think about the tax holiday as just another sale,” he said. “I have in mind that I have $100 that I can spend on whatever. And to me, it doesn’t matter who it’s going to — the store, the state, the municipality. When the $100 is spent, I’m coming home.”

The N.C. Retail Merchant’s Association, on the other hand, said the decision will hurt businesses and consumers while also leading to a loss of revenue. A study by The Washington Economics Group compared Florida in 2009, when there was no tax holiday, to Florida in 2010, when there was a sales tax holiday. It found taxable sales grew by $115 million.

Bob Joyce, president of the Sanford Area Chamber of Commerce, said he doesn’t know many who are pleased with the decision.

“I think it was very popular with citizens; I think it was very popular with retailers,” he said. “... I would’ve rather seen them phase it out over time than just stop it all at once.”

In other news...

Job fair for veterans: U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers is helping put on a job fair for veterans in Fayetteville on Monday. More than 250 businesses have reportedly RSVP’d to the event, which will last from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. at The Crown Center.

New senior services in Chatham: The public is invited to a ribbon cutting a week from Monday for Piedmont Health SeniorCare, at 163 Chatham Business Drive, Pittsboro. It will start at 10 a.m. Aug. 5. An open house will continue until 1 p.m. The center will offer long-term health, social, medical and dietary care.

Grillerz: Grillerz, a restaurant on N. Horner Boulevard, appears closed for good. There’s a “for sale” sign and the phone number listed has been disconnected.

Business fluctuations: In the past week, four corporations have formed in Lee County — Eat Right Incorporated, Monifa’s Southern Food & Catering, One on One Fitness Studio and Ransome Barbell.