Transportation affects everyone in Effingham County, and we have a dire need for a stable funding source for road repairs, improvements and other transportation projects. The Board of Directors of the Chamber of Commerce has decided to support a county-wide Transportation Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax, or TSPLOST, and urged the county Board of Commissioners to place the referendum before the voters.
On November 3, 2020, Effingham County residents will be asked to vote for a one-cent sales tax for transportation purposes. The money will be used solely for transportation projects within Effingham County.
Effingham County is the 31st fastest growing county in the nation, and its population is projected to increase by about 20,000 in the next ten years. Right now, funds for local road improvements come primarily from property taxes. The City of Rincon has no property tax and, thus, no funding source for road projects. TSPLOST funds can be spent only on transportation improvements, such as roads, bridges, sidewalks, bicycle paths, and other transportation-related purposes. Each city within Effingham County is solely responsible for determining their project list, and Effingham County is responsible for identifying transportation improvements in the unincorporated areas of the county.
TSPLOST Frequently Asked Questions
- What is a TSPLOST?
Transportation Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax. A one-percent sales tax which must be approved by the voters and can only be used for transportation.
- Who pays the TSPLOST?
The proposed one cent TSPLOST applies to all who purchase goods in our county, not just those who own property. In addition, an estimated 24%-35% of TSPLOST funds will be paid by sales of natural gas to utilities located in Effingham County generating power for households in and outside the county.
- How much will it raise?
TSPLOST is projected to produce up to $45 million for Effingham County projects over five years
- Who decides what roads are repaired or improved?
Engineers for the county and cities prepared the project lists for this first TSPLOST, based on projects they determined were urgent and necessary. Future projects will be selected based on a county-wide study of our transportation needs.
- When will the TSPLOST start?
The sales tax would begin on April 1, 2021, last no more than 5 years, and end on March 30, 2026 or when the maximum amount of revenue is reached. It can be renewed by voters for an additional five years in another referendum.
- How is the Tax Revenue Distributed?
If approved, TSPLOST funds will be distributed among the county and cities based on population, as determined by the U.S. Census.
- What will the election ballot say?
The ballots to be used in the election shall have written or printed thereon substantially the following:
"Shall a special one percent sales and use tax be imposed in the special district of Effingham County for a period of time of five years and for the raising of an estimated amount of $45,000,000.00 (forty-five million dollars) for the purpose of funding transportation purposes for Effingham County, the City of Guyton, the City of Rincon, and the City of Springfield?” If imposition of the tax is approved by the voters, such vote shall also constitute approval of the issuance of general obligation debt of Effingham County in the principal amount of $35,000,000 for the above purposes. "
- What other counties have a Transportation SPLOST?
There are currently 93 counties in Georgia that have passed a transportation sales tax, and others are considering one.
- What is a TSPLOST?
TSPLOST Project List Highlights
- Effingham Parkway Phase 1 (County and State Funds)
- 9th Street Widening (Rincon)
- East 9th Street Resurfacing and Drainage (Rincon)
- East 4th Street Resurfacing and New Shoulders (Rincon)
- Goshen Road Widening (County)
- Hodgeville Road Turn Lanes at Kolic Helmey, Blue Jay and Goshen Roads (County)
- Roundabout at Old Stillwell and Ash Street (Springfield)
- West Central Boulevard Widening, Repaving and Drainage (Guyton)
- McCall Road Turn Lanes (County)
- Blue Jay Road Turn Lanes (County)
- Improve Train Trestle at Highway 21 Spur (Springfield)
- Archer Road Paving and Widening (Guyton)
- East/West Corridor Planning (Rincon and County)
- Repaving 10 Ash Roads (County)