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State Tax on Entertainment and Nonprofit Events Goes Into Effect

Thalian Hall Center for the Performing Arts
Programming at downtown Wilmington's Thalian Hall will be subject to the new privilege tax.

Today is the last chance to pay the usual admission to movies, museums and cultural events. Effective New Year’s Day, the State General Assembly is imposing a 4.75% privilege tax on admission to such entertainment—which includes a host of nonprofit events.

The new tax is part of the tax reform package signed into law by Governor Pat McCrory last July. While the StarNews reports that many local entertainment venues will simply roll the tax—which amounts to seven percent including New Hanover County sales surcharges—into ticket prices, the process becomes complicated for smaller nonprofit groups. Particularly, for those that will have to pay taxes on donations, sponsorships and giveaways. Local nonprofit leaders say it is yet unclear whether they’ll pass along costs to end users, reduce offerings, or try to augment the value of their programming.

To help organizations navigate these new accounting hurdles, the North Carolina Center for Nonprofits has posted information on its website detailing how the tax will be applied. It is also referring member organizations to attorneys and accountants for pro bono guidance.

For more information for nonprofit operations in 2014, click here.