Tax-free weekend brings back-to-school relief

BOCA RATON, Fla. - Myrna Glassner of Boca Raton is happy to show what she bought for her granddaughter's first day of school.

"Everything is so expensive. It's a little relief today," said Glassner.

Six percent of relief to be exact.

Glassner spent about $100 Saturday at the Boca Town Center Mall and saved $6. She says the money she saved will go to pay for groceries.

Florida's back-to-school sales tax holiday started Friday and runs through Sunday at midnight. That means that shoppers do not pay sales tax on clothing and shoes that cost $75 or less and school supplies that cost $15 or less.

The exemption is not limited to back-to-school purchases and applies no matter how many items are purchased.

Many others, however, lined up early on Saturday not to take advantage of the sales tax holiday, but to make sure their kids will have the school supplies they need when school starts.

"Right now my mom doesn't have a job," said Tahliya Agnew, an eighth grader.

Agnew's mom has three kids. They were in line at 6 a.m. at Boca's Wayne Barton Study Center - four hours early - to get free bags of school supplies. 

The center estimates they'll give supplies to 5,000 area students on Saturday alone.

"It's sad in America that we have such a need that's going to go unmet today," said Barton. "We don't have enough bags, but we're going to give what we have."

Whether it was a break on school clothes, or donations of pens and pencils - things that seemed out of reach this weekend were suddenly available.

"It makes me feel proud and inspired to do my best," said Agnew. "These days, you don't get enough motivation, but when you have the right equipment, it's easier for you to do your work."

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