As of today, July 1, 2011, us Los Angeles residents have two important things to keep in mind while shopping. What exactly are they? Lower sale tax rate (finally!) and banned plastic bags.
Lower taxes, well just a little lower. Residents in the Greater Los Angeles county will see their sales tax lowered by 1%. Sales tax differs greatly in Los Angeles, but in my area its at a whopping 9.75%, so now when I go shopping I'll only be paying 8.75%. Its still relatively high compared to the rest of the country, but any break is a good one. I should note, all of California will have a 1% drop in sales tax, so some areas are dropping as low as 7.25%!
Another important update for us Angelinos is the ban on plastic bags. While I feel rather neutral about Los Angeles unincorporated cities banning plastic bags, I'm well prepared. I recommend you guys buy some nice long-lasting reusable bags, because if you don't, you'll be paying an extra $0.10 for a paper bag at the stores when you go shopping. Now, since I live in the Greater Los Angeles area, this law doesn't affect me but lets be realistic; I have a family of 6 so we could easily be paying an extra $1.50 - $2.00 worth of paper bags per visit if we don't use our own reusable bags. That adds up. Remember that many stores DO give credit when you use your own reusable bags, Target gives you $0.05 per reusable bag!
Just some things we should be aware of, I am glad I found out beforehand because as someone who like to SAVE, I would've been upset having to pay for paper bags!