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City of Lexington faces budget shortfall

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LEXINGTON, NC -- The City of Lexington faces a budget shortfall of $500,000, according to City Manager Alan Carson.

Carson said his initial proposal to the council, as to how to deal with that budget will come next week. Lexington's leadership intends to bridge the gap, which has already come down from an initial shortfall of $2.1 million, without raising the city's tax rates.

The city had hoped to have two additional revenue streams from annexation plans and sweepstakes regulation, but the North Carolina General Assembly made changes the legality of each of those measures. Annexation can now only happen voluntarily, and sweepstakes businesses are not allowed to operate.

"Now we'll just have to focus on growing from within, which is difficult," Carson said.

Carson defined "growing from within" as bringing more people and businesses to town to increase the tax base.

North Carolina law requires that all municipalities have balanced budgets.