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Laurel voters reject sales tax increase

LAUREL – The May 14 primary election saw a majority of registered Laurel voters reject a local sales tax referendum that would have helped a city-owned care center if it had been approved.

The passage of the referendum would have raised the local sales tax from 1 percent to 1.5 percent, but according to unofficial results from the Cedar County Clerk's Office, 198 voters cast ballots against it while 146 voters were in favor of it.

Laurel Mayor Keith Knudsen previously noted that based on the last four years' average sales in the community, the proposed .5 percent local sales tax increase would have potentially generated $88,500 per year over the next 10 years.

“The funds would be utilized to provide financial support for the maintenance and daily operations of Hillcrest Care Center and Assisted Living,” Knudsen previously said. “The additional funds could also help provide training programs for individuals interested in becoming a CNA (certified nursing assistant).”