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Sheppard seeks tax cap override for Seneca County

Seneca County has been authorized to charge a 3 percent county sales tax since the early 1980s.

In the 1990s, the county increased the sales tax to 4 percent by getting a home rule bill passed by the State Legislature. That authorization needed to be renewed every two years.

The 4 percent county sales tax generates more than $23 million for the county.

Normally, approval of the extra 1 percent tax is routine. Not this year.

The Legislature adjourned for the summer with the Senate approving the home rule requests and the Assembly not having approved it from Seneca and many other counties.

The extra 1 percent authorization expires in November and without it, the county stands to lose $5.75 million in sales tax revenue for 2018. To make that much revenue up, the tax levy would need to increase an estimated 58 percent.

That would mean the tax rate would go from $4.50 to $7.80 per $1,000 of assessed value.

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