North Carolina Consumers Get Pinched From Higher Taxes

North Carolina consumers are going to feel another pinch at the mall, the ABC store and most everywhere in between.

The state's sales tax goes up a full penny Tuesday, bringing the total rate charged in most counties to 7.75 percent. At the same time, cigarettes, beer, wine and liquor will have higher excise taxes.

The higher taxes are part of $1 billion in new revenues the Democratic-led Legislature and Gov. Beverly Perdue agreed upon to balance the state budget.

Democrats say they aren't happy with higher taxes but said it was better than laying off more workers and maybe putting prisoners out on the street. Republicans and anti-tax groups say unemployed voters struggling to scrape by will feel the pain acutely.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.

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