Lexington Co. Council Ok's First Reading of Penny Tax

Lexington, SC (WLTX) -- Lexington County council passed the first reading of an ordinance that would create a ballot referendum asking voters in Nov. if they want a county penny tax.

The vote happened at a regular called council meeting Tuesday. Estimates put revenue brought by a penny tax in Lexington County between $250-$300 million over the next eight years.

If passed, the tax would be imposed on ready made food purchases.

Council must now decide whether or not to ask voters if a bond should be associated with the tax, said County Councilman Brad Matthews.

Matthews said unlike Richland County, which asked voters a question pertaining to the tax separately from a bond question, Lexington County will not be doing that. Instead, he said, voters must be asked whether they would like the tax, with an associated bond, or not ask at all.

The next reading is expected to be held June 10. If passed then, it must pass a third vote before being placed on a Nov. ballot.

A public hearing is expected to be held sometime before the third meeting, but it is not clear when that will be scheduled.


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