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Proposed sales tax hike placed on ballot in Wilson County

Posted at 5:28 PM, Oct 29, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-29 20:19:23-04

A sales tax hike is on the ballot in Wilson County. 

On Monday, Martha Salyer voted to increase the sales tax in Wilson County from 9.25 percent to 9.75  percent. 

"It sounded like a good call for me for schools ya know? Take care of the children," Salyer said.

Voters against it didn't want to go on camera in downtown Lebanon. Off camera one woman said she voted no because she 'already pays enough.'

Finance director Aaron Maynard said Wilson County is growing. He believes 21,000 people will move to Wilson County in the next 6 years. 

"Where things get hairy is okay we need to build a $70 million school, that's where growth takes it's toll because we don't have the money for the infrastructure," Maynard said.

Maynard believes they will need to build more schools in the future. In the last 6 years he said they've added 2,600 students to the district.

The sales tax hike would provide about $11 million to Wilson County.

Maynard said, "On a $10 purchase you're talking about a nickel." 

He estimates that $2.7 million of it would go to the City of Lebanon and about $2.2 million to Mt. Juliet.
$900,000 would go to the Lebanon Special Schools District and $5.2 million to Wilson County Schools.

That's why school board member Larry Tomlinson voted yes.

Tomlinson said, "It's a tax that hits everybody."

Personally, he said he'd rather have a sales tax hike than see a property tax increase down the road.

He also feels it will benefit students.

Tomlinson said, "We're looking at having to build more schools all the time."

For comparison, Williamson and Rutherford Counties already pay a 9.75 percent sales tax. 

Election day is November 6.