Budget & Tax Survey


2018-19 Budget & Tax Survey

Results Posted Below.

Of the counties responding to the 2018-19 Budget & Tax survey, General Fund budgeted expenditures remained stable when compared to last year. 58 counties report higher 2018-19 budgets over 2017-18, with the average increase less than 1%.


School Finance

Public school enrollment dropped by about 2,500 students (-0.17%) statewide, and charter school enrollment grew by 12,669 (13%), after growing 12% last year.

County appropriations to school budgets grew, on average, around 4% this year. With data from 93 counties, the current expense funding provided by counties totals over $3 billion. And counties budgeted more than $1.3 billion on capital outlay, debt service, and capital reserve for school capital projects. Average per pupil county current expense spending, which includes charter school students, is $1,676, a 2% increase over last year. 


Note that the County Allocation to Schools includes a county's Total Budgeted School Appropriation (county current expense; capital outlay; debt service; capital reserve; and any supplemental school taxes) as reported on the NCACC Budget & Tax Survey.

17 counties report that they have a funding formula or agreement in place, and 14 counties responded that they budget by purpose or function code.

Other Survey Data

-- 30 counties had a property tax rate change in 18-19, with 19 counties increasing and 11 counties decreasing their rate. Twenty-four counties had a revaluation in 2017 and 9 counties have one in 2018.


-- With 98 counties reporting, property tax revenues grew about 5%, and the total assessed valuation has increased about 5% with roughly the same number of counties responding.


-- The 2017-18 local sales tax growth rate was, on average, 5% based on reporting counties; the average projected 2018-19 rate is approximately 3%.

-- Eleven counties held successful quarter-cent local options sales tax referenda in 2018. Click here to see more about these ballot measures.

-- See the full survey for additional data on school finance, county personnel, and other budgeting questions.

Note: The annual Budget & Tax Survey data is self-reported by counties.  A link to the survey spreadsheet is available at the bottom of this page. Missing data fields appear as red cells on the survey. If your county shows missing data, use this link to update your information on the spreadsheet. Complete data provides more comprehensive analysis for all of our 100 counties, and we appreciate your help on this annual survey.

Complete county-by-county data as well as previous survey results can be found in the spreadsheets below. Please note that these are self-reported data, and do not reflect audited expenditures, revenues, or other county information.

Survey Data XLS