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Update from County Manager, Mike Ruffin, Regarding Sales Tax Distribution



Davie County Residents,
I would like to take this opportunity to update you on the ongoing discussion related to a change in the method of Sales Tax Distribution for the Town of Bermuda Run, Town of Cooleemee and Town of Mocksville.  First and foremost, we appreciate the participation of our town representatives at this past Monday’s monthly Commissioner meeting.  Their willingness to explain their perspective on why the current method of distribution should be continued was valuable.  We also would like to thank the Towns for allowing us to meet with them individually to discuss more in-depth how a change such as the one being considered would impact the Towns and Davie County as a whole.
 
Based on our conversations, we have heard clearly that all three towns are opposed to the change.  Cooleemee, who would be most affected by this change due to their already low sales tax revenue allotment, has explained this change would challenge their police department’s ability to operate.  Mocksville has expressed concern over how this will impact economic development incentives and the ability to keep the city attractive to new business.  Bermuda Run has explained that any reduction in revenue will hinder their progress as a town given their lack of history and stability as an incorporated entity.  We want all three Towns, along with residents who reside in these areas, to understand that we are listening and are strongly taking into consideration the above concerns (as well as others that have been raised) as we work towards a decision that will be made in April.
 
We also want to make residents of Davie County who do not reside within incorporated areas know that their needs are very much being considered and is in fact one of the reasons we are exploring this new distribution method.  It is our job to ensure sales tax revenues that flow through Davie County are fair and equitable to all residents.
 
As mentioned in earlier communications, the current sales tax distribution method was put into place in 1971.  We believe it is important for us to share how Davie County has changed since that time and hopefully give all taxpayers a true understanding as to why we must consider all distribution options.  Based on 2014 population estimates provided by the U.S. Census Bureau and released in March of 2015, a total of 41,434 individuals resided in Davie County.  Based on historical data, when the distribution method was put in place in 1971, approximately 18,855 individuals resided in Davie County.  This increase in population has increased demand for all County services, such as public safety, schools, public health and social services. 

We continue to have discussions with Town leaders as we consider our next steps. Above all, we want to be transparent with members of the community who we believe deserve fair and equitable distribution of these revenues.  We look forward to providing you with continued updates.

Sincerely,

Mike Ruffin, County Manager
 
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