Shoppers pay no sales tax on energy-efficient products this weekend

alopez@macon.comOctober 3, 2013 

For the second year in a row, consumers can get a break on sales taxes if they buy energy- or water-efficient products this weekend.

The break was built into a tax reform bill that the Georgia General Assembly passed last year. No sales tax will be charged for qualifying purchases of energy-efficient products from Oct. 4-6.

While the savings may not be enough to prompt people to upgrade their appliances, those currently in the market will benefit from the state incentive.

The Georgia Environmental Finance Authority website and Facebook page promote the sales tax holiday, while Georgia Power customers received fliers with their energy bill.

Most retailers should be aware of the tax break, but if shoppers are charged incorrectly, they can contact the Georgia Department of Revenue and will be issued a refund, said Nick Genesi, the director of communications.

Morris Appliance in Macon was quiet Thursday afternoon, and manager Ken White said he doesn’t think he will necessarily see more customers as a result of the tax holiday.

Down the road at Best Buy, managers received instructions from regional bosses to pass on to their cashiers on Friday, but their weekly promotional material does not advertise potential savings. Other stores, such as H.H. Gregg, noted the benefit on their fliers.

And at Home Depot, which has one of the largest selections of EnergyStar and WaterSense labeled products, managers were not able to confirm that they are ready to process the tax breaks.

One customer, Hollis Lockett of Crawford County, was shopping for compact fluorescent bulbs on Thursday, unaware that they would be exempt from sales taxes Friday. He put the bulbs back on a shelf, deciding to return this weekend.

“It helps,” he said. “A couple of dollars in your pocket.”

Another customer, Albert Singletary of Macon, wasn’t able to wait for the weekend. He needed an energy-efficient door he was looking at for a remodeling job on Thursday. The door, priced at $229, would cost him an extra $16 in tax.

In Warner Robins, Flint Energies spokesman Jimmy Autry said 40,000 members will receive emails reminding them of the tax breaks. Though the Flint Energies appliance store has been closed since March, Autry recalled a busy weekend last year, when managers planned a sale to coincide with the tax exempt weekend.

Georgia consumers are accustomed to such holidays, he said, noting the tax breaks on school supplies one weekend in August.

“It’s a good time if you are in the market,” he said. “Make a great addition to your home and save some money.”

To contact writer Andres David Lopez, call 477-4382.

The Telegraph is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service