Tourism tax passes easily

Waynesboro voters on Tuesday overwhelmingly gave the green light to adding a one-cent sales tax for the purposes of developing and maintaining parks and recreation facilities within the city’s corporate limits.
Unofficial returns from the special election showed 357 in favor of implementing the tax while 50 were opposed with the referendum open to all residents of the municipality, according to City Clerk Terri Seawright, who oversaw the voting process.
Here is a breakdown of the returns from each ward:
• Ward 1 — 157 in favor; 13 opposed.
• Ward 2 — 82 in favor; 10 opposed.
• Ward 3 — 71 in favor; 11 opposed.
• Ward 4 — 47 in favor; 16 opposed.
Some interesting trends were seen in Tuesday’s election:
• Most notably that 41 absentee ballots were cast and all of those favored the tax. Four absentee ballots were received in Ward 1, two in Ward 2, 35 in Ward 3 and none in Ward 4.
• Tuesday night’s count did not see eight affidavit ballots counted, and that action was to be undertaken by the city’s election commissioners as early as Wednesday morning during the election certification process. Five affidavit ballots were recorded in Ward 1, two in Ward 2 and one in Ward 3. No affidavit ballots were reported in Ward 4.
The tax, once implemented, will be collected on prepared foods, on-premises liquor and beer purchases and hotel-motel stays — and will amount to an extra penny per dollar spent.
The effort to seek the parks and recreation tax began in January when the Waynesboro Board of Aldermen petitioned the Mississippi Legislature to seek local and private legislation allowing voters to say whether or not the measure would be adopted. The law required no less than 60 percent of registered voters within the city to approve the tax for the act to go into effect.
In Tuesday’s vote, more than 87 percent of voters said yes to the referendum.
Results of the canvas, once certified, will be forwarded to the state and the legislative measure will take effect as prescribed by law.

1 Comment

  1. James Pinkerton on May 15, 2019 at 9:31 am

    “collected on prepared foods” McDonalds, the soon to be Burger King, KFC, Taco Bell, Walmart, Supermarkets, so forth. In Mobile, Alabama the sales tax is a high ten percent.

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