Goodwill, Drug Stores Busy on New Year's Eve

Last-minute donations, purchases fuel rush

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    'Tis the season of giving, and Goodwill Donation Centers and drug stores are staying busy. (Published Friday, Dec. 30, 2011)

    'Tis the season of giving, and Goodwill Donation Centers and drug stores are staying busy.

    "If you want that tax deduction, you need to donate your stuff now," said Diane Fullingim, with Goodwill Industries of Dallas.

    People are lining up to give away stuff they don't need in 2012 for charitable tax deductions they do in 2011.

    "At the end of the year, after Christmas, I'm a teacher, and so I get ready for the next half of the year and clean out my closet and bring it up here," said Bobbie Rider of Dallas.

    Truckloads of donated goods arrived Friday at the Goodwill Distribution Center in Dallas, with everything from clothes to computers.

    "I mean it's amazingly busy this time of year -- the amount of donations we get in," said Fullingim. "Normal basis, we get about 70,000 pounds of donations a week. That's about 30 million pounds a year, and that pretty much, you know, doubles this time of year."

    Goodwill Donation Centers will be open until 8 p.m. on New Year's Eve.

    Another busy business at year's end are local drug stores. Pharmacies are seeing a surge in sales as customers spend whatever money they have left in their 2011 pre-tax Flexible Health Spending Accounts.

    "Over the counter, a lot of the over the counter is not covered unless you have a prescription. So, it's a little bit harder," said Tony White, of Dallas.

    Use it or lose it by Jan. 1, when you forfeit anything left in the account.

    "A lot of people know it and wait until the last minute, typically, tomorrow it'll be really busy" James Ross, store manager at the Walgreens on the corner of Oak Lawn and Cedar Springs.

    "The biggest thing is not a problem actually to spend it," said Ross, "The biggest problem is verifying, saving those receipts which we normally trash them as soon as we get them and sending those in to your insurance".