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Ask Us: Schools do pay sales tax

Q: Read where the school board has just approved close to $70,000 for furniture for the new building. This includes taxes. I thought schools were exempt from taxes because of their status?

— John Mitchell, Salisbury

 

A: Here’s an explanation from Tara Trexler, chief financial officer for the Rowan-Salisbury School System:

“Unfortunately, unlike some other governmental entities, school systems in North Carolina are not exempt from sales tax. We must pay sales and use tax on our purchases. We are allowed to request reimbursement on the local portion of the sales tax rate (currently 2.25 percent for Rowan) but we never recoup the other 4.75 percent state portion. Regardless, the total 7 percent must be paid up-front with each purchase.”

 
Q: How do I get my well water tested? 
— Leroy Earnhardt, Kannapolis

A: Rowan County residents can apply at Rowan County’s Environmental Health office, 402 N Main St., Suite 106,  to have well water tested, according to Tonya Zimmerman in that office. An inspector from the department will go to your house to get water samples and then send them to a state lab.

The test for bacteria costs $55 and the one for inorganic compounds (minerals) costs $95. For more information, call 704-216-8525.

The office does not take water samples for the sale or refinance of a home, Zimmerman said.

In Cabarrus County, water testing is handled through the Cabarrus Health Alliance’s Environmental Health Office, which also sends the samples to a state lab. Cabarrus fees range from $45 to $100. For more information, call 704-920-1207.

According to the N.C. Cooperative Extension Service, routine testing for a few common contaminants is strongly recommended, especially if your well is located near a pollution source. Regular testing is establishes a water quality record that could be valuable in  if your water quality is damaged by nearby activity.

Email your questions to askus@salisburypost.com.

 

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