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      Critics say tax holiday not such a bargain

      Sunday was the last day of Arkansas's tax free weekend. The tax holiday started in 2011 and seems to be thriving four years later. Some opposed to Arkansas tax holiday said that shoppers are not getting the deals they think they are.Jason Cline, President of GenLink Strategies said, "The holiday distracts politicians from the kind of tax policy they should be addressing which is real relief for hard working families."Tracey Cochran is the mother of seven children. She said the tax holiday is essential for getting essential things for her family. Cochran prepares a plan with her children prior to shopping at the busy stores.

      "We knew exactly what we needed to get," Cochran said. "I had great helpers and they just gathered up their things and put it int he car. We checked out and got out of here very quickly."

      Cline said he compared pricing of various items before and during the tax holiday and did not see huge amounts of savings. "A lot of times what will happen retailers don't offer a discount in lieu of using this weekend as a time to use the governments price cut on their behalf," Cline said.After two days of shopping Cochran said her family saved more than $50. "We already knew exactly how much it was going to be with the 8.5% tax, we knew it'd be about $50 all together...that's almost a tank of gas for some people."Cline suggests in order to make the tax holiday more effective, the state should change what can be considered taxable."Talk about exempting things other than pens and pencils wedding apparel, garters and diapers," Cline said. "Start taking about tablets computers things that kids really need now a days to getting comfortable, and if they are going to compete in the modern economy for jobs."

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