Project list proposed for DeKalb sales tax


Project list proposed for DeKalb sales tax

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The DeKalb Board of Commissioners and CEO Mike Thurmond discussed a special purpose local option sales tax (SPLOST) on Friday, Sept. 8, 2017. From left: Greg Adams, Nancy Jester, Jeff Rader, Mereda Davis Johnson, Steve Bradshaw, Thurmond, Kathie Gannon and Larry Johnson. MARK NIESSE / MARK.NIESSE@AJC.COM

A proposed DeKalb County sales tax increase would raise money to repave 318 miles of pothole-filled roads, rebuild run-down fire stations and repair other infrastructure, according to a project list presented Thursday by CEO Mike Thurmond.

The DeKalb Board of Commissioners could vote on the list of construction projects as soon as Tuesday.

Voters will make the ultimate decision on raising their sales taxes, from 7 percent to 8 percent, during a Nov. 7 referendum. The special purpose local option sales tax (SPLOST) would raise about $100 million a year for county and city governments.

The DeKalb Commission already took an initial vote on the sales tax Thursday. 

Commissioners voted to extend the duration of the sales tax from five years to six years if every city council in the county also agrees to do so. In addition, the board approved distributing sales tax revenue to cities and unincorporated areas proportionately based on 2016 population estimates.

The sales tax would raise nearly $637 million over the next six years — $388 million distributed to the county government and $249 million to city governments.

Repaving roads is the highest priority on the project list, accounting for 40 percent of the county’s spending from the sales tax. 

In all, transportation projects account for 61 percent of SPLOST spending, followed by 22 percent for public safety, 15 percent for parks and infrastructure repairs, and 1.5 percent for administrative costs.

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