Businesses expecting boost in sales on tax-free weekend

Sheila Hays, owner of Sheila's Ladies Apparel in Portales, expects to see the jeans and T-shirts fly off the shelves this weekend during the state's tax-free weekend sales.

CMI staff photo: Alisa Boswell

Portales Bealls Supervisor Robin Taylor organizes clothing in the juniors department at the store Wednesday afternoon. Taylor and store associate Rose Dominguez said juniors clothes and shoes are what sell the most on tax-free weekend, which will be Friday through Sunday.

Hays and other local store owners in Portales and Clovis say they plan to participate in this year's annual New Mexico Gross Receipts Tax Holiday from Friday through Sunday.

This weekend the state suspends collection of gross receipts tax on sales of qualifying items, which usually include school-related items such as clothing, laptops and supplies, according to the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department.

Hays says her entire store will be 30 to 50 percent off this weekend. She wonders if the economy might hurt sales.

"The (tax free weekend) has been successful in the past, but this year the economy is not good," Hays said.

Frank Bean, manager of Big Lots in Clovis said his store can expect a 25 to 30 percent increase in revenue over an average weekend, but this weekend he is expecting more.

"Anything that has to do with no tax is bound to make business do better," Bean said. "Whatever the state of New Mexico says is eligible as a school supply is what sells more."

Bean said in addition to the tax holiday, they will also have their usual sale items.

"There will be some school supply sales starting Saturday," he said. "I've noticed that people are buying a lot of school supplies early. I think people are realizing if they wait until the school gives them a list, the stuff is gone by the time they get to it, so they're buying it early."

Supervisor of Bealls Department Store in Portales Natasha Fetterman said she also plans on an increase in business.

"We usually do (better with sales), especially if it's well advertised during tax free weekend," Fetterman said. "We have an add with a scratch-off that has different discounts to take a percentage off your total purchase. We're hoping that encourages people to come this weekend."

PNT staff writer Alisa Boswell contributed to this story.

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