Penny sales tax: Voters to decide in November in Orange County

ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — There’s an old saying, “every penny counts.”


Mayor Jerry Demings hopes Orange County residents are firm believers of those words, especially when they hit voting booths later this year.

READ: ‘You probably would have killed both of them’: Kids weren’t buckled up while mom drove 91 mph

Tuesday was a late night for Orange County commissioners as they weighed in on a proposed one-cent sales tax increase.

In the end, Demings got the support he needed — four votes — to put a referendum on the November ballot.

It will ultimately let voters decide if they want to pay an extra penny to fund transportation-related projects throughout the county.

READ: ‘We need it’: Orange County commissioners vote to put penny tax hike on ballot

Demings said traffic congestion and mass transit both need to be addressed, and the only way to do that is with money that the county doesn’t currently have.

If passed, the tax is expected to generate more than $600 million annually.

Demings said without it, transportation issues will continue to worsen as the county’s population grows by the thousands weekly.

“Not everyone agrees how we should solve the challenges that we have going forward, but at least we have a plan,” he said.

According to county officials, more than half of the tax would be paid by tourists.

READ: Police: Woman seen slapping infant on Instagram post charged with child abuse

Click here to download the free WFTV news and weather apps, click here to download the WFTV Now app for your smart TV and click here to stream Channel 9 Eyewitness News live.

Q Mccray

Q McCray, WFTV.com

Q McCray is an award-winning general assignment reporter.