By: Charlotte Smith
Do you think our Emergency Medical Services (EMS) personnel deserve a pat on the back, or something even better, money in their pockets? What about hiring more EMS staff to assist in our emergency needs? We know EMS has expressed many equipment needs.
During the primary election coming in November, Bladen County residents will be voting once again on the rate of one-quarter (0.25%) sales tax increase. This time the Bladen County Board of Commissioners made a resolution for the increase in tax, if passed this election, to fund personnel and equipment for Bladen County Emergency Medical Services (EMS).
Sales tax is considered a fair tax because it is generated from purchases individuals choose to make. The sales tax increase would not apply to groceries, gas, utilities, prescriptions, certain agricultural supplies and motor vehicle purchases. If you purchase $100 of the goods the sales tax applies to it would only cost .25 cents extra.
In 2013, 36.42 million in tourism dollars passed through Bladen County. An additional 1/4 cent sales tax on that amount could have resulted in approximately $91,000 being added to the Bladen County budget to help pay for critical Bladen County Services according to the county figures.
Our first responders are in need of equipment and more personnel. They have stood before our county commissioners numerous times explaining their needs.
Would you like to assist our emergency medical services efforts? You can choose to vote “For” on the ballot this election when it asks, “Bladen County Sales and Use Tax, Local sales and use tax at the rate of one-quarter percent in addition to all other State and local sales and use taxes.”