Vote on sales tax increase for capital improvements for schools

RUTHERFORD COUNTY, N.C. — Rutherford County residents vote Tuesday, May 8, on a countywide sales tax increase to fund capital improvements for schools. The county commissioners in January proposed that the referendum be put on the ballet for consideration of raising the sales tax rate from 6.75 to 7 percent, essentially an extra penny for every $4 spent.

The additional tax would generate an estimated $1.2 million a year to help fund general capital outlay, new facilities and vehicle replacements among others. The funds from the NC lottery that were supposed to be used for the schools was diverted by the NC legislature.

Rutherford County Board of Education along with the county commissioners has been evaluating critical needs of the school system.The Rutherford County School’s Facilities Committee has recommended a building plan, which includes replacing R-S Middle School, Cliffside Elementary, the bus garage and maintenance facility in the next five years. East Rutherford High and Chase High have been recommended to be replaced by the end of the plan’s 10-year period.

Details on the voting process can be found on the RC Schools’ website.

N.C. General Statutes stipulate that a county cannot specify the use of funds on the ballot.