Residents urged take inventory of weather items

Published 12:02 am Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Even though it’s a little more than a month away, local residents should take the coming weeks to take inventory before the state’s first annual severe weather preparedness sales tax holiday, said county EMA director Susan Harris.

Alaba-mians are encouraged to stock up on a variety of supplies for protecting their homes or businesses during Alab-ama’s tornado and hurricane seasons during the holiday, which will be from July 6-8.

A provision in the new sales tax holiday law allows counties and municipalities to join the state by removing their own local sales, and use taxes from the same items during the same weekend. Local governments must notify the state by June 22, 2012, if participating. Covington County has already voted to waive sales tax collections.

“Now is a great time to see what you have on hand, and make a list of the items that you need – before any storm gets close,” Harris said.

Even though storm season officially begins June 1, Tropical Storm Alberto formed off the East Coast this weekend.

Harris said the following list contains examples of items, which must have a sales price of $60 or less, that are covered under this year’s tax holiday.

• Batteries: AAA-cell batteries, AA-cell batteries, C-cell batteries, D-cell batteries, 6-volt batteries and 9-volt batteries. (Coin batteries, automobile batteries and boat batteries are not exempt.)

• Cellular phone battery

• Cellular phone charger

• Portable self-powered or battery-powered radio, two-way radio, weather-band radio or NOAA weather radio

• Portable self-powered light source, including battery-powered flashlights, lanterns or emergency glow sticks

• Tarpaulin, plastic sheeting, plastic drop cloths and other flexible, waterproof sheeting

• Ground anchor system, such as bungee cords or rope, or tie-down kits

• Duct tape

• Plywood, window film or other materials specifically designed to protect window coverings

• Non-electric food storage cooler or water storage container

• Non-electric can opener

• Artificial ice, blue ice, ice packs and reusable ice

• Self-contained first aid kit

• Fire extinguisher

• Smoke detector

• Carbon monoxide detector