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What are 'Sales and Use' taxes and why is it on my ballot?

Several Piedmont-Triad counties voted on an increase to those taxes. Here's why.

NORTH CAROLINA, USA — North Carolina voted in presidential, congressional, and gubernatorial races on Super Tuesday. But many of us also voted on several tax propositions and other laws.

But what do those tax propositions do?

Several counties voted on a potential Sales and Use Tax increase. These taxes apply to sales made in the state or outside of the state. 

Interestingly, Alamance, Forsyth, and Surry counties all voted on increases to those taxes for slightly different reasons. North Carolina law dictates that an explicit reason for sales tax cannot be written into the law. So effectively, the tax can be used to fund a variety of different projects.

In Forsyth County, the ¼ cent increase was supposed to go towards teacher pay, according to county commissioners. Alamance’s increase for the same amount was mainly supposed to offset losses elsewhere in the budget. Stokes' increase was also for ¼ cent - it was supposed to go toward educational facilities in the county.

The measures failed in Alamance and Stokes. But in Forsyth, the vote for 'yes' is currently in the lead with 60% of the vote.

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