Tourist Development Tax (Watch)

Tourist Development Tax (Watch)

CS/HB 585 (Fine) and CS/SB 658 (Brandes) expand the allowable uses of tourist development tax (TDT) revenues. The bills allow TDT revenues to be used to acquire, improve or finance public facilities, if such facilities are needed to increase tourist-related business activities that are recommended by the county tourist development council. This provision only applies if the following provisions are met: the county receives a specific amount in revenue from the tax in the year prior to the expenditure; the infrastructure use is approved by a vote of at least two-thirds of the county governing board; no more than 70 percent of the cost of the infrastructure is paid for with tourist development tax revenue; and an independent professional analysis has shown the positive impact of the infrastructure on tourist-related businesses. 

Additionally, the bills extend the current authorization to use TDT revenues on such things as restoration and maintenance of beaches, inland lakes and rivers, to expressly include the same types of expenditures for estuaries, lagoons and channels. (Hughes)