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Growth seen straining public services

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RALEIGH, N.C. — The burgeoning population in North Carolina has put pressure on the state’s tax system, which cannot generate the revenue to build needed schools and roads, a new report says.

Between 2000 and 2007, North Carolina’s population grew by 1 million, or 13 percent, says the study by the Budget & Tax Center, a program of the North Carolina Justice Center in Raleigh.

That net population growth equals the combined populations of Raleigh and Cary.

With 9 million people, North Carolina has overtaken New Jersey to become the 10th largest state in the U.S.

“Absent a comprehensive reform of its tax system, North Carolina will be unable to makes the investments needed to respond to recent growth, let alone prepare for future changes,” John Quinterno, research associate at the center, says in a statement. “The result of inaction: A less prosperous state with a diminished quality of life.”

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