By JIMMY LAWTON
CANTON -- St. Lawrence County will have an 8 percent sales tax beginning Dec. 1.
The board of legislators approved the increase at the Monday meeting, just weeks after Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo signed home-rule legislation, which allowed for the law's passage.
St. Lawrence County legislators say the increase allows the county to stabilize property taxes and begin restoring its depleted fund balance.
The new law raises the local sales tax from 3 to 4 percent, bringing the total sales tax, including the state's share, up from 7 to 8 percent.
According to numbers provided by the county legislators the increase in St. Lawrence County’s sales tax will generate an estimated $14 million with $900,000 going to Ogdensburg and $1.4 million divided between the towns and villages, based on recent sales tax receipts.
Legislators estimated the new tax will generate an additional $1 million in the 2013 budget season in the month of December.
The new revenue should allow the county to offset last year's drastic 14 percent increase in the the tax levy. A plan put forward by legislators allows calls for a reduction of the same amount in the 2014 budget.