Sales Tax Increase Effective Jan. 1


The town sales tax is going up Jan. 1, 2005 from 2 percent to 2.12 percent.

"It'll cost you 12 cents on $100 - not a lot of money," Town Manager Fred Carpenter said.


Town Manager Fred Carpenter

The additional revenue generated by the tax increase will pay for public safety improvements. Voters made the bond law in 2003.

"It was approved by the voters quite some time ago, so it was pretty automatic," Carpenter said. "(The town council) just had to pass an ordinance and they did."

Carpenter said citizens can rest assured that any attempt by the council to initiate a tax increase would be accompanied by plenty of advance notice, including the requisite public hearings.

"They didn't just all of a sudden dream up a tax increase," he said. "There would have been a lot more fanfare, I guarantee you."

The public safety improvements approved by the voters include an overhaul of police and fire computer systems at a cost of $1.3 million. The current system is a 12-year-old, DOS-based program that can be unreliable.

Other projects funded by the tax increase are a remodeling of the Main Street fire station ($560,500) and a computerized firearms training system for the police department ($65,000).

In addition to retail, hotels, restaurants and bars, the tax increase applies to advertising, amusement, construction, printing, manufactured buildings, timbering, publishing, rent income, telecommunications, transporting-for-hire, and utilities.

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