Pender County’s economy sees growth despite Hurricane Florence

County sees increase in revenue growth, decrease in tax exemptions

Pender County’s economy sees growth despite Hurricane Florence

BURGAW, NC (WECT) - The first Pender County State of Education and Economy meeting was held Thursday night in which the latest financial audit was presented.

Hurricane Florence costs

Hurricane Florence set the county back $9,309,588. Of that, $4,951,972 went to debris handling, $2,812,389 went to debris monitoring and $2,256,489 went to emergency operations.

The total costs were covered by the county’s fund balance.

So far, FEMA has reimbursed $351,453 of those costs.

Healthy fund balance

The advantages of a healthy fund balance were discussed.

Flexibility, strong cash flow, and sufficient funding for emergencies and natural disasters were some of the advantages mentioned.

The ideal flexibility for the general fund is $63 million with a total county budget of $103 million.

Population growth

There are a projected 63,000 residents in Pender County. In 1980, the population was 22,180.

By 2035, the county will be the 37th most populous county.

Each year over the past four years, there have been more than 350 permits for single-family homes. That’s an approximate revenue of $300,000 to $350,000.

Revenue growth

The total revenue for building permits has increased by $146,866 in one year. The total revenue for all building permits in 2018 was $1,020,973 up from $874,107 in 2017.

Sales tax revenue also continues to increase. In 2018, Pender County generated $8,851,855 in sales tax. In 2017, the county saw $8,056,857 in sales taxes.

Taxpayers

The county saw a slight decrease in tax exemptions for 2018, down to $52.8 million from $53 million in 2017.

The largest utility taxpayer in the county is Duke Energy, which shells out $420,374. The largest corporate taxpayer is Red Mountain Timber at $434,835.

The event was hosted by Pender Education Partnership (PEP), a non-profit foundation designed to augment educational opportunities in Pender County’s public schools. MojoTone, the maker of amps, bridges, pickups and speakers, co-hosted the event.

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