Who would pay for this tax? 

The quarter-cent sales tax would apply equally to anyone who purchases eligible goods in New Hanover County – including those who are visiting as a tourist or commuting into the county from somewhere nearby.  

Over the past five years, visitor spending from tourism has ranged from $598 million to as high as $773 million annually in New Hanover County, according to Visit North Carolina. And according to a 2019 study by the CVB, the average travel party to Wilmington and our beaches spent $519.41 per day. So, this sales tax would ensure that those who benefit from our vacation destination would help to fund some of what makes it great. 

Also, according to the most recent data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (ACS) in 2015, more than 20,500 people commute daily into New Hanover County from Brunswick and Pender County, and this number has continued to increase. So, the sales tax would capture commuter spending of more than 20,500 individuals as well. 

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