Tax-free holiday for storm supplies
Get ready for hurricane season with seven days of tax-free shopping.
From May 31 through June 6, Floridians can purchase generators, gas cans and other items considered essential to help weather a storm, without having to pay sales tax.
The Outdoor Power Equipment Institute offers several tips for those looking to get and use a generator.
- When the lights go out, generators keep your home humming with light and power. When purchasing a generator, consider the types of items you need to power. Determine how many kilowatts are needed for essential items (charging family cell phones, a refrigerator, etc.) during an emergency.
- Research generators online before you buy. Talk with the staff at the store or go online. Discuss safety features and ask about manufacturer fueling and care instructions.
- Know what features you want. Circuit-breaker-protected outlets will guard against generator overload. A larger fuel tank will provide extra running time. Integrated fuel gauges will help keep tabs on fuel levels and prevent power interruptions. Low tone mufflers make for quieter operation. Fold-down handles and wheels can make it easier to move your generator.
- If you are planning to use a generator, a carbon monoxide detector installed in your home is smart. Now is a great time to pick one up and batteries are available tax-free during the sales tax holiday.
- Identify the generator’s placement. Give portable generators plenty of room for ventilation. Place the generator outside and away from windows, doors, and vents that could allow carbon monoxide to come indoors.
- Keep generators dry. Before a storm hits, identify how to cover and vent the generator. Buy model-specific tents or generator covers online, at a home center or hardware store.
- Buy the right extension cords. Be sure you have on hand heavy duty extension cords suitable for outdoor weather that will easily reach your generator.
- Have the right fuel on hand before a storm hits in an appropriate container. Select containers that seal well. Store fuel in a safe place, away from heat sources and out of the reach of children. Label the can with the date of purchase and the ethanol content. Check filled cans regularly and replenish them if needed. Fuel that is more than 30 days old should not be used in any outdoor power equipment. Use the type of fuel recommended by the generator manufacturer. It is illegal to use any fuel with more than 10 percent ethanol in outdoor power equipment.
Bank of Tampa opens loan production office in Plant City
The Bank of Tampa opened a new loan production office at 120 N. Collins St. earlier this month to better serve Plant City customers. Plant City market director and local loan production office leader Nick Thurston said the process was a long time coming and the bank now hopes to get more involved in the community.
“We invest in the community by creating a physical presence,” Thurston said in a news release. “For more than a year, we have been working to bring The Bank of Tampa’s brand to Plant City. Now that we have a physical presence here, right in the heart of Downtown Plant City, I look forward to watching us become an integral part of the Plant City community.”
The Bank of Tampa has 12 full-service banks throughout the Tampa Bay area.
Durant grad accepted into Coast Guard Academy
Madison Seguin’s next step after high school will take her to the United States Coast Guard Academy.
Seguin, who will graduate from Durant High School this afternoon, was officially appointed April 29 at the high school’s annual award night. The USCGA is based out of New London, Connecticut and guarantees applicants such as Seguin a Bachelor of Science degree with no post-grad debt and a position as a USCG commissioned officer in return for a five-year commitment to military service after four years of study.
Operation Paying It Forward giving away Jeep
Operation Paying It Forward is hoping to help a family in need of reliable transportation get just that.
The group is giving away a Jeep Liberty to one lucky winner and is now accepting online nominations. The winner must have a valid driver’s license and insurance, and will be responsible for the tax, tag and title transfer.
To nominate yourself or someone you know, visit operationpayingitforward.com/recipient-nomination-form/ by May 31.