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      Charleston County Council decides on 1/2 cent sales tax and smoking ban

      CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV)-- At a Charleston County Council meeting Thursday night, two votes got the green light.{}Council decided to hold public hearings regarding the half-cent sales tax referendum. A proposed smoking ban in unincorporated areas of the county also cleared a hurdle.

      The possibility of a half-cent sales tax referendum passed by a vote of five to four. The public will now decide whether or not to hold a vote on the sales tax increase. If the public agrees a vote is needed, that referendum would be put on the ballot{}in 2014. The increase could generate $1.35 billion{}over 25 years.{}Officials say the money would be used for road improvements.

      The smoking ban ordinance also passed by a committee with only one 'nay.' The ordinance will now be sent to County Council for approval. It covers all unincorporated areas of Charleston County.

      You can read the half-cent sales tax referendum here.

      You can read the smoking ban ordinance in its entirety here.

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