Residents soon deciding on hike to Blount County sales tax

Residents soon deciding on hike to Blount County sales tax

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"It means building and maintenance things that we've deferred, roofs, HVAC, the list goes on and on. It also means safety upgrades that need to be addressed in our school system, text books, technology," said Rob Britt Director of Schools. "It means building and maintenance things that we've deferred, roofs, HVAC, the list goes on and on. It also means safety upgrades that need to be addressed in our school system, text books, technology," said Rob Britt Director of Schools.
School leaders hope you vote 'for' the half percent hike since they estimate being able to collect $2.5 million in sales tax. School leaders hope you vote 'for' the half percent hike since they estimate being able to collect $2.5 million in sales tax.

By LAURA HALM
6 News Reporter

MARYVILLE (WATE) - A bump to the sales tax in Blount County could be in the foreseeable future. County leaders soon leaving it up to voters to decide whether to raise the rate half a percent, from 9.25 to 9.75 percent. It would match the current sales tax rate in Maryville and Alcoa.

The Blount County school system is passing out flyers in hopes they'll get their share back.

Where do you get your groceries or a quick bite to eat?

"About 83 percent of all sales tax dollars is collected inside the city of Alcoa and the city of Maryville," said Finance Director Randy Vineyard.

That's sales tax money county leaders hope to get back, by raising the sales tax rate in the county from 9.25 to 9.75 percent. It would be the highest allowed in the state.

"The majority already live outside those two cities and are already paying that tax," added Vineyard.

So if passed, how much of a bump would you see? If you spent $10 at a restaurant in the county, you would pay an additional 5 cents in sales tax. Which would be split half going to county schools, the other Blount County's debt.

"It's a way for Blount Countians to have other people help pay their taxes," said Vineyard.

School leaders hope you vote 'for' the half percent hike since they estimate being able to collect $2.5 million in sales tax.

"It means building and maintenance things that we've deferred, roofs, HVAC, the list goes on and on. It also means safety upgrades that need to be addressed in our school system, text books, technology," said Rob Britt Director of Schools.

Some residents say there are plenty of pros. "The percentage that is going up is so small that it wouldn't really mean much just a few extra dollars," said Caleb Long.

While others think there are just too many cons. "I think it's one more burden put on us when we're already seeing an increase in just about every single thing we buy," said Sherry Harper.

The choice for an increase is left up to only people living out in the county, the vote happening May 6th and if passed the sales tax increase would take effect July 1st.

We also learned local sales tax earnings from Maryville, Alcoa, and the county would be split equally.

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