Fulton County Schools asks voters to OK sales tax worth $1.2 billion

Fulton County voters will decide in November whether to extend a one-cent sales tax to pay for school building upgrades, technology and other projects.

The Fulton County Board of Education on Thursday unanimously agreed to ask voters to renew the Education Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax for another five years.

It will appear on the Nov. 2 ballot.

The current sales tax expires June 30, 2022.

If renewed, officials estimate it will generate about $1.2 billion over five years to pay for renovations at dozens of schools, refurbished media centers, upgrades to high school athletic fields and new technology, among other items.

“After careful consideration, staff has determined that pursuing reauthorization of the SPLOST will provide the most benefit for the district and the least burden for taxpayers,” the district’s chief financial officer, Marvin Dereef, told the board.

Board member Katie Reeves said the funding mechanism has allowed the district to build new schools and buy computers for students without going into debt.

Earlier this month, the Atlanta school board similarly agreed to call for a November vote on the sales tax.

Atlanta Public Schools is located in both Fulton and DeKalb counties. The district is in line to receive an estimated $650 million if residents from both counties approve the tax extension.