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Pinellas County Tourist Tax Allocation


Pinellas County Tourist Tax Allocation for Major Projects. Pinellas County officials are considering changing how tourist tax dollars are allocated to fund major upcoming projects like beach renourishment and a new Tampa Bay Rays stadium. The discussion took place during a joint meeting between the county commissioners and the Tourist Development Council on May 3rd, 2024. [1]

Pinellas County Tourist Tax Allocation for Major Projects Beach Renourishment Needs

The county faces significant costs for replenishing eroded beaches, with projections showing around $102 million needed for renourishment in 2026 and 2032. A recent analysis suggests Pinellas could take on the full cost of regular beach renourishment over 40 years, estimated at $484.6 million, which is about a quarter of the expected capital tourist-tax income during that period. [4]

However, this projection assumes no state grants for renourishment and is based on a “worst-case scenario” where the county makes no progress with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, which has stalled projects due to a dispute over public access easements. [4] Emergency renourishment after storms like Hurricane Idalia would require additional funding. [4]

Rays Stadium Funding

The county is negotiating a preliminary agreement to contribute $312.5 million in tourist tax dollars towards a new Tampa Bay Rays stadium in downtown St. Petersburg. Given the financing over decades, the final cost would likely be much higher. [1]

Pinellas County Weighs Tourist Tax Allocation for Major Projects

Pinellas County Tourist Tax Allocation for Major Projects. Currently, 60% of the county’s tourist development tax (a 6% levy on accommodations) goes towards operational expenses like advertising, while 40% funds capital projects. [1] Officials have repeatedly floated moving to a 50-50 split, which was incorporated into the financial projections presented at the meeting. [1]

Pinellas County Tourist Tax Allocation for Major Projects. County Administrator Barry Burton stated that even with a 50-50 split, the tourism bureau would have ample funding for marketing. The change would make more dollars available for capital uses like beach renourishment and sports venues. [1]

However, a vote by county commissioners is required to change the current funding formula, and nothing is scheduled yet. [1] The county’s tourist tax revenue hit a record $98 million in fiscal year 2023 but has slumped slightly in recent months. [1]

Pinellas County Weighs Tourist Tax Allocation for Major Projects And Other details on the tourist development tax allocation and regulations can be found on the Pinellas County [2][3] and Florida Department of Revenue [6] websites.

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[1] https://www.tampabay.com/news/pinellas/2024/05/03/beaches-baseball-nourishment-tampa-bay-rays-stadium-tourism-spending-tax/
[2] https://pinellas.gov/services/pay-tourist-development-tax/
[3] https://pinellastaxcollector.gov/property-tax/tourist-development-taxes/
[4] https://www.tampabay.com/news/pinellas/2023/09/14/pinellas-may-be-able-pay-beach-renourishment-by-itself-after-all/
[5] https://baynews9.com/fl/tampa/news/2023/07/13/beach-renourishment-pinellas-corps-
[6] https://floridarevenue.com/taxes/taxesfees/Pages/local_option.aspx
[7] https://partners.visitstpeteclearwater.com/reporting/bed-tax
[8] https://www.wfla.com/news/pinellas-county/new-plans-detail-finances-of-rays-stadium-deal/
[9] https://pinellas.gov/coastal-management-easements/
[10] https://www.wtsp.com/article/news/investigations/10-investigates/rays-new-stadium/67-c614c2c6-0cfb-4993-83db-1a9b02d905b8
[11] https://www.wtsp.com/article/news/local/pinellascounty/pinellas-county-tourist-tax-funds-rays-beaches-sand-renourishment/67-926cfdc6-39be-4b4f-91eb-b7c9f4258a28
[12] https://www.wfla.com/news/pinellas-county/st-petersburg-leaders-discuss-terms-for-rays-stadium-funding/
[13] https://pinellas.county-taxes.com/touristexpress
[14] https://www.sportsbusinessjournal.com/Articles/2023/10/04/tampa-bay-rays-new-ballpark-funding-st-petersburg-pinellas-county-florida-development-tropicana
[15] https://www.abcactionnews.com/news/region-pinellas/governor-desantis-announces-funding-boost-to-support-beach-renourishment
[16] https://www.wusf.org/environment/2024-04-24/gov-desantis-approves-50-million-more-pinellas-county-beach-renourishment
[17] https://www.fox13news.com/video/1446090
[18] https://www.yahoo.com/news/state-spending-another-50m-beach-210711312.html
[19] https://news.yahoo.com/state-spending-another-50m-beach-210711312.html

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