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2015 Louisiana Annual Sales Tax Holiday – Friday, August 7, & Saturday, August 8

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We’re a little late in getting this posted, but in case you didn’t hear, No Sales Tax this weekend!!  Support our local merchants by looking up their listing and heading over to #SupportLocal

Taken from the Louisiana Department of Revenue website:

2015 Louisiana Annual Sales Tax Holiday – Friday, August 7, & Saturday, August 8

Taxpayers

Retailers

Taxpayers

What is the Annual Sales Tax Holiday?

The Louisiana Annual Sales Tax Holiday provides an exemption from state sales tax on the first $2,500 of the purchase price of most individual items of tangible personal property for non-business use. The state sales tax is payable on the portion of the purchase price of any individual item in excess of $2,500.

The holiday applies only to the 4 percent state sales tax. It does not apply to sales taxes levied by parishes, municipalities, school boards, and other political subdivisions of the state.

Under Louisiana law, the annual sales tax holiday takes place on the first consecutive Friday and Saturday each August. The 2015 sales tax holiday begins at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, August 7, and continues through 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, August 8.

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What items are eligible for exemption?

The exemption applies statewide to all consumer purchases of tangible personal property, other than vehicles subject to license and title and meals furnished for consumption on the premises where purchased, including to-go orders, provided that the property is not for use in a business, trade, or profession.

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What items are NOT eligible for exemption?

In addition to the specific exclusions in the Act for vehicles and meals, the state sales tax holiday does not apply to:

  • Purchases of taxable services (such as hotel occupancy)
  • Amusement, recreational, and athletic admissions
  • Repairs to tangible personal property
  • Laundry, cleaning, pressing, and dyeing services
  • Vehicle parking
  • The furnishing of cold storage space
  • Printing services
  • Telecommunication services
  • Leases or rentals of tangible personal property

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What are the conditions for exemption?

A customer is eligible for the sales tax exemption if during the two days of each annual holiday:

  • The customer buys and accepts delivery of eligible property;
  • The customer places property on layaway;
  • The customer acquires property that was previously placed on layaway; or
  • The customer places an order for immediate delivery, even if delivery must be delayed, provided that the customer has not requested delayed shipment.

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Are there any special provisions?

The following special provisions apply:

  • The exemption is allowed on both inputs to and withdrawals from layaway.
  • Purchases during the holiday with “rain checks” issued before the two-day holiday are eligible for exemption, but purchases after the holiday with “rain checks” issued during the holiday are not eligible for exemption
  • Orders for immediate shipment are eligible for exemption even if the shipment is after the holiday, provided that the customer does not request delayed shipment
  • The post-holiday exchange of merchandise to effectuate changes in size, color, or correction of defects does not create a tax liability, but exchanges after the holiday for dissimilar items will be considered the purchase of new property on which the sales tax will be payable
  • Items that are normally sold as a unit, such as dining tables and chairs, cannot be individually priced for the purpose of creating a separate eligibility cap for each individual item
  • For a 60-day period after the holiday, dealers who issue refund or credit for the return of merchandise that was eligible for sales tax exemption during the holiday can issue refund or credit for the state sales tax on that returned merchandise only if the customers returning the property have receipts showing that the tax was actually paid on the original purchases, or the dealers are otherwise able to document that the state sales tax was paid on the original purchases

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Retailers

What is the Annual Sales Tax Holiday?

The Louisiana Annual Sales Tax Holiday provides an exemption from state sales tax on the first $2,500 of the purchase price of most individual items of tangible personal property for non-business use. The state sales tax is payable on the portion of the purchase price of any individual item in excess of $2,500.

The holiday applies only to the 4 percent state sales tax. It does not apply to sales taxes levied by parishes, municipalities, school boards, and other political subdivisions of the state.

Under Louisiana law, the annual sales tax holiday takes place on the first consecutive Friday and Saturday each August. The 2015 sales tax holiday begins at 12:01 a.m. on Friday, August 7, and continues through 11:59 p.m. on Saturday, August 8.

top of page

What items are eligible for exemption?

The exemption applies statewide to all consumer purchases of tangible personal property, other than vehicles subject to license and title and meals furnished for consumption on the premises where purchased, including to-go orders, provided that the property is not for use in a business, trade, or profession.

top of page

What items are NOT eligible for exemption?

In addition to the specific exclusions in the Act for vehicles and meals, the state sales tax holiday does not apply to:

  • Purchases of taxable services (such as hotel occupancy)
  • Amusement, recreational, and athletic admissions
  • Repairs to tangible personal property
  • Laundry, cleaning, pressing, and dyeing services
  • Vehicle parking
  • The furnishing of cold storage space
  • Printing services
  • Telecommunication services
  • Leases or rentals of tangible personal property

top of page

What are the conditions for exemption?

A customer will be eligible for the sales tax exemption if during the two days of each annual holiday:

  • The customer buys and accepts delivery of eligible property;
  • The customer places property on layaway;
  • The customer acquires property that was previously placed on layaway; or
  • The customer places an order for immediate delivery, even if delivery must be delayed, provided that the customer has not requested delayed shipment.

top of page

Are there any special provisions?

The following special provisions apply:

  • The exemption is allowed on both inputs to and withdrawals from layaway
  • Purchases during the holiday with “rain checks” issued before the two-day holiday are eligible for exemption, but purchases after the holiday with “rain checks” issued during the holiday are not eligible for exemption
  • Orders for immediate shipment are eligible for exemption even if the shipment is after the holiday, provided that the customer does not request delayed shipment
  • The post-holiday exchange of merchandise to effectuate changes in size, color, or correction of defects does not create a tax liability, but exchanges after the holiday for dissimilar items will be considered the purchase of new property on which the sales tax will be payable
  • Items that are normally sold as a unit, such as dining tables and chairs, cannot be individually priced for the purpose of creating a separate eligibility cap for each individual item

For a 60-day period after the holiday, dealers who issue refund or credit for the return of merchandise that was eligible for sales tax exemption during the holiday can issue refund or credit for the state sales tax on that returned merchandise only if the customers returning the property have receipts showing that the tax was actually paid on the original purchases, or the dealers are otherwise able to document that the state sales tax was paid on the original purchases.

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How does the Cash Register Reprogramming Credit work?

Dealers who incur costs to reprogram cash registers, including computer programming, as a result of a change in the state sales and use tax rate or base shall be allowed credits on their sales tax returns of up to $25 for each cash register reprogrammed. Dealers are allowed to claim credit only for reprogramming costs invoiced to them by external providers of services, but not for internal reprogramming services rendered within their businesses by such internal persons as owners, officers, partners, or employees.

Dealers whose point-of-sale cash registers are controlled from host computers can deduct the costs invoiced by external service providers to reprogram tax rate or base information in those computers, not to exceed $25 times the number of cash registers controlled from the host computers. For example, a dealer or merchant whose host computer controls 20 point-of-sale cash registers can claim credit for up to $500 in charges for reprogramming services associated with a change in the state sales tax rate or base.

Dealers who do not use point-of-sale cash registers, but who instead issue printed or electronic invoices on which the invoiced tax amounts are determined from tax rate or base information housed in their computers, can deduct up to $25 in external reprogramming costs for each computer that must be reprogrammed because of a change in the state sales tax rate or base.

The credit is deductible on Line 12A of the state sales and use tax return. Copies of invoices from external service providers must be attached to the tax return to support the amount of credit claimed. More detailed information about the reprogramming credit is available from Revenue Information Bulletin No. 03-009.

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What are the return filing procedures?

Retailers should report exempt sales on Line 24 of the Louisiana State Sales Tax Return (R-1029).

Questions concerning this matter can be directed to the Customer Service Division at 855-307-3893.

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August 7, 2015 |

Legal Tips for Small Businesses

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Starting and maintaining a start-up business is never easy, especially when it comes to legalities. A lot of small businesses and startups that are in the process of launching their companies face legal trouble. No matter what market you are in, you must always find time to review the rules and regulations to ensure your business does not violate any laws. You also must understand the penalties you could suffer for violating those laws. To help prevent any legal turmoil and maintain a successful business, here are a couple of tips to consider when dealing with contracts:

Invest in Legal Spending

Even when you think your business has allotted enough money in the budget towards legal work, save more! Do not underestimate the price of legal fees. Legal fees are often very expensive and should be considered a necessary investment for all businesses. When starting your business, make sure you consult with an attorney to get a roundabout measure on how much you should put away.

Make Sure You Hire the Right Attorney

When you decide to start your business, meet with an attorney and organize all legal processes, making sure the criteria and guidelines for your industry are met. This will provide you with an action plan, created by your attorney, with a step-by-step to-do list for a successful launch. An attorney’s knowledge on patents, intellectual property and expertise on the ins and outs of the legal realm will help you streamline the process. The sooner you get an attorney on your side when filing the paperwork, the faster your legal process will be. It may seem expensive, but you will end up spending a lot more time and money if you do it yourself.

Pay Really Close Attention

Just as legal fees are often underestimated, so are the deadlines.  If an important contract says it will take two weeks to process, always double that period of time, estimating it will take longer. This is a general guideline that should be used when working with government deadlines and delivery dates. To help shorten the time you may need to process papers, make sure all legal matters are set as a priority, and processed immediately. You do not want to save it for last.

The time and effort it takes to start your own business is vast. Make sure no legal issues are overlooked by abiding every rule and regulation. Not only will this help you launch your business successfully and avoid any serious legal problems in the future, but it will give you the opportunity to focus on more important things, like making a profit.

August 5, 2015 |

Do You #SupportLocal..

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Love the Locals is all about, well, loving the locals! It’s about living local and shopping local. Local business adds greatly to the distinct “color and feel” of the communities they are in.

Instead of shopping at a generic big box store, shop with a neighbor. It has been proven in study after study that a much greater percentage of every dollar spent with a local merchant stays in the local community versus a dollar spent with a national chain.

Local merchants are passionate about their products and services so if you want personal service and unique merchandise then…

Love the Locals and they will love you right back!  Check out some our great businesses that are already part of our program.

 

Sayes Office Supply2%20SAYES%20LOGO%20-%20HIGH%20RESOLUTION

Beef O’ Brady’slogo

Security Mobile Shredding2014-11-03%2008.20.08

Crossroads Gifts & Gourmet11034244_827832547289275_8931371907946626706_n

  • Listed in Shopping
  • 3592 Louisiana 28, Pineville, LA 71360, USA
  • (318) 443-3100

Robin Ewing Pool Supplies, IncStorefront%20Winter

Ray’s PharmacyRays Pharmacy

Pest Aid Company of Alexandria, Inc.Pest'aid sign

Heyman Dental Group

Gone Wild SafariSafari%20Logo

Y­Not StopLogo%20w%20tagline

Aggressive Health SolutionsAggressiveLogo

Dr. Donna Breen Medical SpaMEdSpa-Logo

Heart of Louisiana Credit Unionhol2011cmyk

Rush Funeral Home, Inc10923828_623959044406084_1586797254282997689_n

STAT Home HealthSTAT-Vertical

Wallace Eye Associateswealogo

Lagniappe Homecare1469877_622953881099974_758876361_n

Fast Glass & Radiatorfast-glass-300

Affordable Transmissionsat-300

M R Imaging Systemshome

St. Frances Cabrini Schoolstfrances1

Magnolia State Mortgage LLCLogo

John Ward Interiors and Giftslogo1-John-Ward-Interiors

The Garden Path Stone CenterLARGER

Sacred Heart School of Moreauvilleshs-logo

Rabalais Small EngineLogo

Agilus Health

Primary Care Specialistlove_the_locals-logo-primary_care_specialists

Gift Gallery at Phoenix

Better Care Home HealthbetterLOGO

 

July 27, 2015 |

The long trying journey of building your own website.

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By Michele Godard, General Manager KALB-TV, kalblovethelocals.com

I woke up one morning and decided it was time. It was time to own my own name and, as we like to call it in the digital business, “be your URL” – truthfully, nobody calls it that I just made that up. But honestly, the idea was to work through the process of building my own website with my name as if I was a small business without the many resources the television station I manage has.

Boy was I in for it!

I started off by visiting several web hosting services. I remembered a positive experience with GoDaddy and as an avid watcher of television commercials, I have always enjoyed their Super Bowl ads.

First lesson – do not pick your hosting service because you like their Super Bowl ads!

GoDaddy looks easy enough and so I begin the process. I check to see if my name is available, it is, and then register www.michelegodard.com – easy as pie right? NO! Pie is not easy to make and I should have remembered that (my crust always lacks something and I just buy the store made stuff) plus there is more to making a pie then just the crust.

I start the process of using GoDaddy’s “Website Builder” software. It is, indeed, fairly easy. Pick the kind of website you want and the theme. Let me stop here by telling you I made a BIG mistake right in the beginning of the process. I never asked myself what I the purpose of my site was.

Second lesson – don’t make a website unless you know what it is for!

Using the information I wanted to share about my career, interests and motivation for developing the site; I filled out the template as best I could. Honestly, I was high fiving myself about how good it turned out. I hit publish and shared it on Facebook and Twitter.

A few days later, I was attending an online seminar on website development. The trainer shared a website called www.freegrader.com and, being the inquiring type of person I am, I wanted to “grade” my new website. Boy was I in for a rude awakening. It got a 32 out of 100. Never being one to be satisfied with life at the bottom third of the World Wide Web, I investigated the problem. It turns out when I first developed my website, I picked the cheapest one, a personal website. This does not allow for mobile optimization. In other words, when I looked at it on a mobile device it looked like a tiny desktop.

Third (and most important) lesson – DON’T BUILD A WEBSITE AT ALL UNLESS IT IS MOBILE OPTIMIZED!

When is the last time you have seen anyone without a phone? If you build it and you think they will come to your website only via desktop, you would be better off not building a website at all. This article in the Huffington Post says “Research shows that 57 percent of mobile users will abandon your website if it takes more than 3 seconds to load and 30 percent will abandon a purchase transaction if the shopping cart isn’t optimized for mobile devices.” That was in 2014 and things have only gotten more mobile since then.

With my shiny new website not being what I had envisioned at all, I called GoDaddy and learned only a professional business site is mobile optimized.

Final Lesson – Never build a web page yourself, find out it is not mobile optimized and then have to re-build the site!

www.michelegodard.com is a work in progress that can now be seen on a mobile device but would have been so much more efficient if I had done what every small business should do – HIRE A PROFESSIONAL WEBSITE BUILDER!

That is my final word. This is too important for your business to leave it up to chance that your site might turn out O.K. Building a website is as important as your logo or any other detail you have agonized over in your business.

Hire a professional!

Note: KALB-TV has built into the Love the Locals plan a micro site which many businesses use instead of a website. If you are interested in website services our partner www.localx.com has it all! Contact us at advertise@kalb.com for more information.

July 15, 2015 |

Social Media Tips for Your Small Business

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It’s no secret that social media is a very popular part of today’s culture. Especially for those who want to target millennials or upcoming generations, it’s imperative that you have a strong social media presence. When you are heavily involved in platforms like Twitter, Instagram or Facebook, you specifically target followers and attract potential leads. If you’re looking to create your social media presence, take a note of the tips below and get started!

Utilize Social Media To Help Sell

According to Hootsuite, 72% of people are more inclined to make a purchase from a company they have interacted with on twitter. Honestly, there is no reason why you shouldn’t have a social media presence these days. Not only is it free, but it gives you the opportunity to reach people who are out of your area. In these outlets, you can describe your product and actively try to sell them.

 

Expand Your Reach

The best part of social media? You get to talk to people you didn’t know had a need for your product in a different area. People are able to directly search what they need and their specifications, so if they find you, you’re more likely to earn their business. Both Facebook and Twitter have allowed advertising through targeted ads and sponsored messages to propel companies in different markets. You even have the potential to reach people around the world.

 

Provide Great Customer Service

People highly judge a company on their customer service and how they speak to their clients. If you have a great reputation with your customers, it might be in your best judgement to show it via social media. This shows your current customers that they are working with a great company that focuses on what they need. It also shows that you’re willing to go the extra mile and personally respond to their concerns. Eveybody wants to make sure their money is going to people who genuinely care, and social media is an easy way to show that you do.

 

Protect Your Reputation

It’s much easier to set up a good online reputation than rebuild one.  While you build your social media platforms, it’ll also be easy to see what people think of you and your services. If it’s all good remarks, congratulations! However, since it is social media and everybody has opinions, there might be a couple of people who eventually could have mean things to say. If that’s ever the case, you can directly respond to their comments and fix the problem.

 

Even so, when people initially look up a brand, they want to see the person behind the screen. When you have social media platforms, you get to create a personality, which builds trust. Make sure to build a personality based on honesty, loyalty and service. If you are able to maintain a good name, then more clients will come your way!

 

Going into the social media world can be a dangerous idea, but when handled properly, it can be very beneficial to your company!

June 22, 2015 |
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