Tuesday’s ballot in Collier county will ask residents to increase the sales tax there by one percent.
County commissioners voted 3-to-2 in favor of asking voters to approve a sales tax increase earlier this year. If passed, the one percent addition would make Collier county’s sales tax 7% for seven years or until it raises 490-million dollars-whichever comes first. The money would be used on roadway, sidewalk, and bridge improvements; enhancing hurricane evacuation shelters; and land acquisition to support housing for Collier County’s work force. The money would also be used to expand mental health care facilities and veteran’s nursing care facilities.
Seventy million would be set aside for the municipalities of Marco Island, Everglades City, and Naples for city-specific projects.
Supporters of the measure say many projects were put on hold because of the recession-and the sales tax increase is more cost-effective than borrowing the money and paying interest.
Opponents say the county should look at other options and budgeting to cover these costs.