Commissioners approved putting the referendum on the ballot to let residents decide on the quarter of a cent increase and said the additional revenue would be earmarked specifically for public education projects in Swain County. The sales tax increase would have raised an estimated $290,000 a year for the school system to use toward capital projects.
Even though the commissioners committed to putting the funding toward education, some residents weren’t convinced that would actually happen. If it would have passed, a future board of commissioners could possible redirect the funding to other priorities.
All four candidates for Swain County commissioner supported the referendum as long as it went to education. A similar sales tax increase for educational purposes passed in Jackson County this year during the primary election.
Swain County Local Sales and Use Tax