page-template,page-template-full_width,page-template-full_width-php,page,page-id-9,mkd-core-2.0.1,mikado-core-2.0.1,ajax_leftright,page_not_loaded,,onyx child-child-ver-2.0.0,onyx-ver-3.2, vertical_menu_with_scroll,smooth_scroll,wpb-js-composer js-comp-ver-6.0.3,vc_responsive
An Ongoing Focus on State-of-the-Art Workforce Training

An Ongoing Focus on State-of-the-Art Workforce Training

Burke County, located in the Western Piedmont region of North Carolina, is a thriving community with an outstanding quality of life and a strong manufacturing base. It is home to many globally competitive companies including 10 foreign-owned manufacturers.

Located one hour from Charlotte and four hours from Atlanta, Burke County offers ease to markets. It has access to several major interstates including I-77, I-85 and I-40, which crosses Burke County for more than 30 miles.

Home to 90,000 people, nearly 30% of the county’s workforce is employed in the manufacturing sector. Burke Development, the economic development entity, works closely with statewide organizations, local governments and utility providers to create a supportive environment for growing local businesses and companies interested in expanding in the area.


Burke County has a population of over 90,000. Approximately 25% of our workforce is employed in manufacturing and the median household income is $38,330. See more data from the…

NC Dept. of Commerce, Access NC County Profile
U.S. Census Bureau, American Community Survey
Burke County Wage Data
North Carolina Wage Data

Demographics - Chmura

Industry Snapshot - Chmura

Occupation Snapshot - Chmura


UNC Health Blue Ridge is a not-for-profit community healthcare system, providing advanced healthcare and wellness services from more than 40 locations across a three-county region of Western North Carolina.

The system includes one hospital with two locations, a wellness center, home health care and a continuing care retirement community. Nearly 120 primary care physicians, physician specialists and extenders in the Blue Ridge Medical Group combine with other physicians on the Medical Staff to serve patients in the region.

UNC Health Blue Ridge provides graduate medical education programs for medical school graduates and students in osteopathic medicine. UNCHBR is affiliated with UNC Health, one of the nation’s leading and most innovative healthcare organizations, providing area residents with ready access to more specialized care when needed.

Low Cost Tax Structure

  • North Carolina has the third lowest business tax burden among all states
  • State and local business taxes generated 36.2% of all taxes generated compared to a national average of 44.1%
  • NC also has the lowest effective tax rate in the nation when comparing the percentage of all business taxes to the private sector gross state product

Property Tax Rate

2023-2024 Tax Rates

Burke County                               .56

Downtown tax rate                     .12


Connelly Springs                         .05

Drexel                                            .35

Glen Alpine                                  .29

Hickory                                         .455

Hildebran                                     .15

Long View                                    .49

Morganton                                   .50

Rhodhiss                                      .525

Rutherford College                    .12

Valdese                                        .515

Tax Advantages and Tax Credits

Tax advantages

  • Industrial machinery is taxed at 1% with a maximum of $80 per item
  • Raw materials used for production, packaging and shipping are exempt
  • Items bought for resale are exempt
  • No inventory tax
  • Equipment or facilities installed for recycling solid waste are exempt from property tax
  • No sales tax on electricity or natural gas used in manufacturing process

Tax credits

  • Job creation
  • Machinery and equipment
  • Research and development
  • Business property
  • Imports/exports using NC ports
  • Alternative energy use

Industrial Building Costs

TypeCost (per sq. ft.)
Lease$3.00 – $6.00
Purchase$20 – $50
Construction$60 – $100

(Land/site cost range with infrastructure: $10-$50k/acre)

Stay in the know

Sign up today and we’ll keep you up-to-date on local news from Burke County.