Articles in regional publications that pertain to a wide range of North Carolina-related topics.
for Popular Government Vol. 7 Issue 1, July/Aug 1940
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For two hundred years of North Carolina's history there was no constitutional limitation on the power of local governmental units to incur debt or levy taxes. In 1868 the Constitution provided that no county, city, town, or municipal corporation could contract debt for unnecessary expenses. From 1868 to 1940 these local units of government have been asking the Supreme Court of North Carolina to tell them what is a necessary expense for which they may incur debt and levy taxes without a vote of the people.
The total of the State and county tax on property says the constitution of North Carolina, shall not exceed fifteen cents on the hundred dollars value of property. However, counties are able to fix a higher rate for three reasons: the state does not levy any property tax under this provision; the fifteen cent limit does not apply to taxes for school purposes; the fifteen cent limit does not apply to taxes for special purposes.
With the coming of every spring, officials in one hundred counties and around three hundred cities and towns in North Carolina begin to list the services their respective governmental units are expecting to perform in the coming fiscal year--in short, they start the annual process of budget making. For 1940-1941, multiplying units and expanding functions call for more and larger budgets.
Lucas provides a monthly update concerning major governmental fields such as use of thumb-prints in law enforcement, 41 million dollar debt reduction for North Carolina, and the price of clean streets.