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Durham commissioners finalize meal tax referendum

Posted September 8, 2008

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— Durham commissioners finalized a referendum for a one-percent sales tax on prepared food Monday evening.

The proceeds from the tax will be divided between beautification and cleanup, community marketing, workforce development and civic, cultural and recreational projects, Durham Convention and Visitors Bureau President Reyn Bowman said.

The  tax could raise between $5 million and $7 million a year, officials said. Supporters say the cost will be minimal to the average person, possible $18 a year.

The referendum will be placed on the Durham County ballot in November.

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  • 68_polara Sep 10, 2008

    Realize that voters passed a bond in 2005 for city beautification. What has that done for Durham's appearance? Now they want another tax to fund the same thing?

    Could Durham officials ever get their hands on enough money to satisfy them?

  • TheAdmiral Sep 9, 2008

    "0-30 percent of the tax will be paid by RTP workers"

    I can say with some confidence that most of the people here work in RTP.

  • TheAdmiral Sep 9, 2008

    "Wake County already has a meal tax, so crossing that border won't help. That tax has helped partially pay for the RBC Center, Wake Med Soccer Park, the Cary Aquatics Center, and the new Convention Center."

    That is why I don't eat in Wake County and don't attend those events. Because if they were worth their weight - you would not need tax money to fund them.

  • TheAdmiral Sep 9, 2008

    "Adding 3 cents to the cost of a happy meal will make it expensive? Really?
    "

    Yes, added to the .75 that they collect for eating inside, that three cents is another whole drink.

    Ya don't seem to get it - taxing anyone more causes people to spend less. With inflation out of control - guess what - some can't afford a .59 cent hamburger.

  • ncwebguy Sep 9, 2008

    Adding 3 cents to the cost of a happy meal will make it expensive? Really?

    Wake County already has a meal tax, so crossing that border won't help. That tax has helped partially pay for the RBC Center, Wake Med Soccer Park, the Cary Aquatics Center, and the new Convention Center. Meanwhile, Durham had to raise property taxes to get its performing arts center, and the old DAP is slowly falling apart. 20-30 percent of the tax will be paid by RTP workers out for lunch and out-of-county visitors to Southpoint and other shopping centers grabbing a bite to eat.

  • annemarek Sep 9, 2008

    NO TO TAX. TAX IS A DIRTY WORD.

  • TheAdmiral Sep 9, 2008

    The only thing the meals tax is going to do is make the Happy Meal for the children in the poor parts of town expensive - and they will not be able to eat because of the greed from the Council.

  • no contest Sep 9, 2008

    If these short sighted, tax raising politicians want to beautify and cleanup Durham they can start by enforcing laws already on the books. Have you seen the junk cars and broken down homes around Durham? They want workforce development? Try lowering taxes, making it easy to do business in Durham and get government out of the way. Try attracting new businesses with a better business climate. Does ‘cultural and recreational projects’ translate into more basketball courts where gangs can hang out? Maybe it is another museum. Anything they build will need ongoing maintenance and repairs costing us even more money. How about raising the meal tax to 2% to cover that?

  • thewayitis Sep 9, 2008

    Please folks, don't vote for this. I think the Durham County taxpayers have never seen a referendum they don't like. Everything seems to pass here. You really want a tax increase for that? No Thanks. I guess I'll be dining elsewhere....

  • 68_polara Sep 9, 2008

    Just another new tax in Durham, we're used to it. They have to fund their never ending mismanagement fiascos and boondoggles some how.

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