News 12 at 6 o'clock, November 28, 2008
AIKEN COUNTY, S.C.---People aren't just saving on clothes and electronics this weekend, they're also saving taxes on guns in South Carolina.
South Carolina is having its first ever "Second Amendment Weekend" thanks to an amendment added this summer.
Dean Haskins owns about 55 guns and went to Hootie's Outdoors for another.
"I just enjoy hunting and I enjoy the outdoors and I just enjoy guns," said Haskins.
He did some research before-hand and knew what he wanted, a Glock 27, but he waited for the perfect day to buy it.
"I didn't want to pay the tax on it, trying to save some money," Haskins said.
That's why he waited for the tax holiday, when customers don't have to pay taxes on any handguns, rifles or shotguns.
Michele Johanns owns a few guns herself for protection. She bought her first one a few years ago when she heard about a kidnapping at a local clothing store.
"I guess I'm comfortable with the idea that if need be I have the protection. I just definitely don't want that sort of situation to come up," says Johanns.
This sales tax holiday is not just pleasing customers, but store owner Link Atkinson as well. He had a nice surprise an hour before he opened Friday, when cars were already outside with people waiting for the store to open.
By middle of the day, he had sold about 25 guns, when his average is about 3 or 4. It's a big boost for his black Friday.
"It's like having a 2-day or 2-week sale at Christmas and they give you a year no interest," said Atkinson.
Officials say the holiday will cost the state about $15,000 but this owner says it's well worth it.
"Being able to own something that your constitution gives you the right to own," Atkinson says.
State lawmakers approved the break in June, but only after Governor Mark Sanford vetoed it. He said it would only affect the timing of gun purchases, without promoting gun ownership.
The sales tax holiday goes through Saturday at midnight and will continue every year on Thanksgiving weekend.
It applies only to guns, not any ammunition or accessories.
The National Rifle Association says no other states are considering a tax-free holiday on gun sales.