Louisiana sales tax holiday encourages residents to prepare for hurricane season

BATON ROUGE – Louisiana residents can stock up on flashlights, batteries, generators, and other storm-related items free of the 4 percent state sales tax during the 2012 Hurricane Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday on Saturday, May 26 and Sunday, May 27.  The 2012 Atlantic Hurricane Season begins June 1.

“This is the perfect opportunity to begin the preparations that can help to keep your loved ones and property safe, secure and comfortable during hurricane season,” Secretary of Revenue Cynthia Bridges said.  “I encourage everyone to get ready now.  Don’t wait until there’s a storm bearing down on us or, worse, after one has already struck.”

The sales tax holiday exempts the first $1500 of the purchase price of each of the following eligible items:

  • Self-powered light sources, such as flashlights and candles
  • Portable self-powered radios, two-way radios, and weather-band radios
  • Tarpaulins or other flexible waterproof sheeting
  • Ground anchor systems, straps or tie-down kits
  • Gas or diesel fuel tanks
  • Batteries, sizes AAA, AA, C, D, 6-volt, or 9-volt (Automobile batteries and boat batteries are ineligible)
  • Cellular phone batteries and chargers
  • Non-electric food storage coolers
  • Portable generators
  • Storm shutter devices (Materials and products manufactured, rated, and marketed specifically for the purposes of preventing window damage from storms)
  • Carbon monoxide detectors
  • “Blue Ice” (and similar re-usable cooling products)

The 2012 Hurricane Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday exempts eligible purchases from the 4 percent state sales tax only.  Local sales taxes apply unless specifically exempted by the local taxing jurisdiction.

Visit www.revenue.louisiana.gov/hurricaneprep for a full explanation of sales tax holiday provisions.

Comments

LDR News Release – Protect tax records and financial documents during emergencies

BATON ROUGE – Protect tax records and financial documents from storms, floods, and other emergencies, the Louisiana Department of Revenue advises taxpayers.

 The 2011 Atlantic Hurricane Season began on June 1.  The National Weather Service says there is a 65 percent chance of an above-normal season.  Early preparation is the key to making sure your family, property, and important personal records remain safe.

 Keep Documents Secure

 Water damage poses a particular threat to paper records.  In advance of a storm or flood, protect these documents by placing them in airtight containers and moving them out of harm’s way.

 Use Paperless Media

 Most bank statements and other financial documents are available as electronic records from your financial institution.  Preserve these data by burning them to CDs or saving them to portable memory drives. 

 Scan important paper records such as W-2s, payroll records, and tax returns into an electronic format.  Many commercially available home printers include easy-to-use scanning features.

 In addition, some web-based e-mail services such as Google’s Gmail or Microsoft’s Hotmail offer free online document storage.  You can upload your electronic records directly from your home computer and download them again from any machine with Internet access.

 Document Valuables and Business Equipment

 Compile a room-by-room list of your belongings or business equipment.  Photograph or videotape the contents of your home or business, especially items of high value.

 Having a visual record of your valuables can provide proof for an insurance claim.  It can also help to verify a loss claim on state and federal tax returns.

 In the event of a disaster, the Department of Revenue can provide information on potential tax deductions or credits, filing extensions, and other tax-related matters.  Bookmark www.revenue.louisiana.gov as the source for state tax-related information.

 -30-

Comments

LDR News Release – Protect tax records and financial documents during hurricane season

BATON ROUGE – The time to protect your tax records and financial documents is now, not when a major storm is already taking aim at the Gulf Coast.  The Louisiana Department of Revenue (LDR) reminds individual taxpayers and business owners to make preparations sooner, rather than later.

Methods for protecting financial information include:

Paperless Media

Most bank statements and other financial documents are available as electronic records from your financial institution.  Backing these data up by burning them to CDs or saving them to portable memory drives is a cost-effective way to protect your information in the event of a natural disaster.

It is also a good idea to scan important tax records such as W-2s and other pay information, tax returns, and other paper documents into an electronic format.  Many commercially available home printers are available with easy-to-use scanning features.

In addition, some web-based e-mail services, such as Google’s Gmail or Microsoft’s Hotmail, offer online document storage.  Check with your service to see what storage options might be available.

Document Valuables and Business Equipment

Compile a room-by-room list of your belongings or business equipment. This will help you verify the market value of items for insurance and casualty loss claims. Photograph or videotape the contents of your home or business, especially items of high value.

Having a record of your valuables can provide proof for an insurance claim. It will also help you remember what you might be able to claim as a loss on state and federal taxes.

You should store photos or videos on CDs, DVDs, or portable memory drives in a safe location away from the area at risk.

Count on the Louisiana Department of Revenue

In the event of a disaster – and well after – the Louisiana Department of Revenue can provide information on potential tax deductions or credits, business disaster assistance, calculating losses, and other tax-related matters. Check LDR’s website, www.revenue.louisiana.gov, for news about disaster-related tax matters. As a top priority after a disaster, LDR will update forms and offer explanations of loss-relief programs.

Comments