NORTH ADAMS -- A two-day state sales tax holiday resulted in plenty of purchases at local businesses over the weekend.
Tony Esposito, store manager at H. Greenberg and Son, said Saturday that sales had been very good for the day, with people buying equipment for decks and roofing, counter tops, flooring, cabinetry, plumbing fixtures, lawn furniture and paint.
"It has brought a lot of traffic into the store and we’re seeing some new faces," he said.
Besides not having to pay the state’s 6.25 percent sales taxes, Greenberg’s tripled the savings for customers by offering an additional 12.5 percent off purchases for a total of 18.75 percent in savings.
Also playing on the 6.25 percent sales tax, Carr Hardware offered its customers an additional 6.25 percent in savings.
"It adds up, especially on the big ticket items," Robert Micket, store manager at Carr Hardware, said Sunday.
Items that the store sold a lot of during the sales tax holiday were snowblowers, Geotherm water heaters, grills and paint, he said.
"There was a lot of pre-shopping too, with people coming in during the week to price things and get estimates," he said.
The Massachusetts Legislature first approved a sales tax holiday in 2004 as a way to boost retail sales during a historically slow weekend. This year’s holiday wasn’t approved until July 31, and the state expects to lose about $20 million in revenue
Patrick Kennedy, sales manager at Central Radio, said the sales tax holiday has traditionally been a great weekend for the appliance and furniture business.
"We’ve been selling a little bit of everything," he said.
Polly Macpherson, of Williamstown, said she waited until the sales tax holiday to purchase some lawn chairs for a property her church rents to college students.
"I think New York and Vermont should collaborate with Massachusetts on this. Having a sales tax holiday at the same time would bring a lot of people to the region," she said.
John S. and Sandy Swistak, of Cheshire, also waited until the holiday to buy a rug.
"I think the state should do this more often," Sandy Swistak said.
Keith Bona, co-owner of Berkshire Emporium and Antiques, said while the store hadn’t been flooded with people, a lot of customers that had come in were purchasing antiques.
"With many of these items being $200 and up, it’s really some extra savings," he said.
Flo MacGregory, a clerk at Where’d You Get That?! in Williamstown, said several of the store’s customers this time of year were from out-of-state, and many didn’t know about the sales tax holiday.
"It’s fun to tell people they don’t have to pay the sales tax. You can see the impact in the smiles on their faces," she said.