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Administration FAQs

Please call Cindi Woodard (828) 488-9273 ext 2225 Email:

$10 for a birthday party, reunion, etc. $25 for a yard sale, Tupperware Party, etc.

You don’t pay for it until you pick up the key a couple of days before you use it, but yes you would.

There is not a kitchen available for use.

Please call Cindi Woodard (828) 488-9273 ext 2225   Email:

3 large picnic tables under the pavilion and 2 along the creek.

Tag Office - FAQs

In 2005, the North Carolina General Assembly ratified House Bill 1779 to create a combined motor vehicle registration renewal and vehicle tax collection system. The legislation places the responsibility for motor vehicle tax collection for the state’s 100 counties with the Division of Motor Vehicles (DMV). The new combined registration fee and tax collection has become North Carolina’s new “Tag 8, Tax System.”

The new system is scheduled to be phased into effect with vehicle registration renewals that are due in July 2013. By June 2014, all North Carolina vehicles will be enrolled in the system.

The new form combines information about your vehicle registration renewal fee and your vehicle tax due. The new Tag & Tax System allows you to make one payment for both registration renewal and vehicle taxes.

Yes. Vehicle registration renewal fees will remain the same annual cost.

Your vehicle tax will be due at the same time you renew your vehicle registration. North Carolina law requires that your vehicle tax be paid in order to renew the vehicle registration. The due date will be printed on the new combined notice that you receive in the mail.

No. You cannot renew your vehicle’s registration, whether it is leased or owned, unless the total taxes and registration fees on the vehicle are paid.

Taxes due on this notice are for the coming year, covering the same period as the vehicle registration.

No. Vehicle taxes on leased motor vehicles must be paid in full at the time of renewal. A copy of the combined tag and tax notice is not sent to the leasing company.

Yes. State law requires that interest be charged on late vehicle property tax payments and on late registration renewals.

Your tax amount due will be included on the new combined notice with your county and (if applicable) municipality tax rates and other applicable taxes due. The notice will include a clear breakdown.

No. If you have paid your vehicle tax amount for the year and then transfer the license plate to another vehicle, you will not be eligible for a refund of the taxes paid. The registered motor vehicle to which the plates are transferred will not be taxed until its current registration is renewed.

An owner can apply for a refund of taxes paid when a motor vehicle is sold or registered out of state. The refund will be calculated on any full calendar months remaining in the registration period after the license plate is surrendered to the N.C. Division of Motor Vehicles. Within one year of surrendering the license plates, the owner must present the following to the county tax office: (1) Proof of plate surrender to N.C. DMV (DMV Form FS20): and (2) Copy of the Bill of Sale or the new state’s registration.

Active duty non-resident military personnel may be exempt from North Carolina motor vehicle property tax. To qualify for an exemption, you must present a copy of your Leave & Earnings Statement to the county tax office. The statement should be for the month and year in which you register the vehicle and must include your Estimated Time of Separation (ETS) date and home of record.

Please contact the Swain County Tag Office at 828-488-9273 with any additional questions.

Board of Elections FAQs

Yes they can choose which party they wish to vote with.  The only time they would have to vote with that party afterwards would be if there was a second primary in a certain race with that party.

Yes as long as they are a registered voter in Swain County.  We also offer registration and voting at the same time during the one-stop period.

No.  A voter can only register and vote during the one-stop period.

No. You may fill out the absentee request but the ballot must be mailed.  You may hand deliver the ballot back or a near relative may do so.

Any registered voter may request an absentee ballot to be mailed to them.  Only the voter or near relative may request the absentee ballot.

Building Permit FAQs

You can download applications for permits from our website or pick them up in the office.

You can download applications for permits from our website or pick them up in the office.

A licensed contractor is required whenever construction is done that exceeds $30,000 in value.  The value is based either on a signed contract or our permit valuation, which is $91.36/sq. ft. of  heated space for new residential construction. Re-models are based on contract price. For commercial  projects, talk to our commercial plan reviewer. These rules are made by the NC Licensing Board, and  we have no control over them. You may contact the Licensing Board for further information at (919)571-4183 or

Residential plans normally do not require an architect. If the proposed residence is unusually large and/or complicated it could require plans sealed by an architect or engineer. For commercial plans, you need to talk to our commercial plan reviewer. A log home must have a set of plans.

Any building greater than 12’ in any dimension requires a building permit. If it is greater than 400sq ft it requires a permanent foundation. All buildings used for commercial purposes require a building permit and a permanent foundation. 

Not required in single family residences for work costing less than $5000 if no structural (load-bearing) work is done, or if no work involving plumbing, mechanical, or electrical systems is done.  Replacing plumbing fixtures without altering the trap or the drains or vents does not require a permit.

No. We do have order forms, or you can go to Code Services on the State DOI (Department of Insurance) website and order online. 

Occupancy Tax FAQs

Occupancy Tax Forms and Occupancy Taxes are due on or before the 20th day of the month following the month in which the tax accrues.

Room occupancy tax is four percent (4%) of the gross receipts derived from the rental of any room, lodging, or similar accommodation furnished by a hotel, motel, inn, tourist camp, or similar place within the county that is subject to sales tax imposed by the State under G.S. 105-164.4(3).

No. This tax is in addition to any State or local sales tax.

This tax does not apply to accommodations furnished by nonprofit charitable, educational, or religious organizations, when furnished in furtherance of their nonprofit purpose. This tax does not apply to any private residence or cottage that is rented for less than 15 days in a calendar year or to any room, lodging, or accommodation supplied to the same person for a period of 90 or more continuous days.

Occupancy tax returns filed with the county Finance office are not public record as defined by G.S. 132-1 and may not be disclosed except as required by law.

After the 20th day of the month following the prior month in which the tax was collected. Postmarks are not honored.

In case of failure to file any return on the date it is due, a penalty equal to 5% of the amount of tax will be assessed if the failure is for not more than one month, with additional 5% for each additional month, or fraction thereof, during which the failure continues, not exceeding 25% in the aggregate, or $5.00, whichever is greater. In addition, the case of failure to pay any tax when due, a penalty equal to 10% of the tax will be assessed, except the penalty shall in no event be less than $5.00. G.S. 105-236. Legal action will be enforced on delinquent taxes that are not

Yes. Any person who fails or refuses to file an occupancy tax report shall be subject to penalties for failure to pay and failure to file as stated above.

After occupancy taxes are collected by the county, 97% is forwarded to the Swain County Tourist Development Authority (3% is kept for county administrative fees). The TDA’s primary focus is promoting tourism in the area.

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