GREENVILLE, PITT COUNTY -

The sales tax on electricity in North Carolina has increased and a new 3.5-percent sales tax on natural gas has taken effect as well.

The changes in sales taxes began Tuesday and affect all electric and natural gas customers in North Carolina, said the Greenville Utilities Commission. These sales taxes will appear on GUC bills because Greenville Utilities is required to collect the tax in accordance with state law.

The GUC listed the following changes:

• Sales tax on retail sales of electricity will go from 3 percent to 7 percent
• Special rate of 2.83 percent on retail sales of electricity for laundries is repealed and replaced with the 7 percent tax.
• Qualifying industrial customers and farmers continue to be exempt from paying tax on electricity.
• Originally, the tax on natural gas was to be 7 percent, effective July 1, 2014. But a new bill that was passed into law on June 30, 2014, reduces the gas tax to 3.5 percent for the first year (July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015). Beginning July 1, 2015, the gas tax will be 7 percent.
• Qualifying industrial customers and farmers may seek exemption from paying taxes on natural gas.

For additional information visit www.dornc.com or call 1-877-252-3052.