Optional 1 Cent Sales Tax

Funding important projects for Indian River County residents since 1989


Introduction

Voters in the 2016 general election voted 64.35% in favor to renew the One-Cent Sales Tax, which is set to expire on December 31, 2019. This will extend the tax for an additional 15 years, providing funding for important projects from lagoon restoration and clean-up, emergency services vehicle replacement, parks and recreation facilities, to road improvements.

Indian River first levied 1 Cent Sales Tax in 1989 for a 15-year period (voters approved 60.3%) and in 2002, voters approved 15-year extension (65.5% in favor).

Sales tax projects

How is Optional Sales Tax Spent?
Click through these six tabs to learn more

Road Projects

Road Projects and Improvements

Past Projects
  • 66th Ave. widening - SR 60 to 49th St. - $18.6 million
  • 66th Ave - 4th St. to SR 60 - $4.6 million
  • CR 512 widening - SRMS to I-95 - $2.8 million
  • Oslo Rd. widening – 27th St. to Old Dixie - $4.7 million
  • 53rd Street – IR Blvd. to 58th Ave. - $4.1 million
Upcoming Projects
  • 66th Ave. widening - SR 60 to 49th St. - $18.6 million
  • CR 510 widening - U.S.1 to 58th Ave. - $10.8 million
  • 66th Ave. widening – 49th St. to 65th St. - $12.4 million
  • 26th St. widening – 43rd Ave. to 58th Ave. - $5.5 million
  • 43rd Ave. – 18th St. to 26th St. - $8.8 million

Sheriff's office Projects

Sheriff - Law Enforcement and Safety

Past Projects
  • Jail expansion (256 beds) - $23.3 million
  • Law enforcement vehicles - $2.2 million
  • Crime Scene Unit - $1.4 million
Upcoming Projects
  • Fleet facility renovation - $1.6 million
  • Corrections medical housing - $1.5 million

Emergency Services

Emergency Services / Fire Rescue

Past Projects
  • Fire Rescue vehicles - $1.4 million
  • Station 5 replacement - $1.1 million
  • 800 MHz Radio system expansion - $2.2 million
Upcoming Projects
  • Fire rescue vehicles - $3 million
  • 800 MHz radio system upgrades - $5.4 million

Indian River Lagoon & Stormwater Projects

Past Projects
  • Egret Marsh pollution control system - $7.2 million
  • Main Relief Canal PC - $5.4 million
  • Osprey Marsh PC - $2.6 million
Upcoming Projects
  • PC Main Relief Canal upgrades - $1 million

General Government Facilities

Past Projects
  • County Administration Bldg. - $33.1 million
  • Emergency Operations Center - $4.5 million
  • Supervisor of Elections/ 43rd Ave. Complex - $4.1 million
Upcoming Projects
  • Courtroom expansion - $3 million

Parks and Recreation

Past Projects
  • Bracket Library construction - $9 million
  • Beach restoration projects - $28 million ($20 MM grants)
  • North County ballfields - $2.0 million
  • IG Building - $4.4 million
Upcoming Projects
  • Sporting Clays, Skeet, and Trap - $1.3 million

The 1 cent sales tax allows Indian River County to...

Sales tax projects
  • Reduce Property Tax Burden – The County has the third lowest General Fund tax rate out of 67 counties in Florida. The Optional Sales Tax (OST) has allowed the County to fund many infrastructure needs, easing the burden on property taxes.
  • Reduce Debt Burden – The County has been able to fund most capital improvement projects on a pay as you go basis since the OST has been in place. This reduces the need to borrow money to fund such expenses. By funding improvement in a pay as you go basis, the additional interest and other borrowing costs are avoided. The County's total debt has decreased from $143 million to $51 million over the last 11 years.
  • Let Everyone Pay—not just property owners – The County population swells significantly with part-time residents and tourists during the winter months. County road and other infrastructure are built for peak demand. Visitors use the same parks, libraries, roads and other facilities as permanent residents. Funding such improvements with OST ensures that visitors share in the cost of infrastructure.
  • Keep Impact Fees lower – Impact fees paid by new development would be significantly higher than current levels without the credit for future sales tax payments. Higher impact fees could dampen economic development and place additional stress on the construction industry.
  • Ensure "Essentials" such as food and medicine are not taxed – Additional taxes can place a hardship on people with limited economic resources. The OST exempts most essential purchases in order to avoid placing a hardship on lower income residents.
  • Put a $50 Cap on large transactions – The OST is not levied on sales amounts exceeding $5,000. This limits the maximum tax on any one purchase to $50, thus reducing the burden on large purchases such as cars, boats, and RVs.
  • Share Revenue between Cities and County – The OST is shared between the County and the five (5) local municipalities per Florida Statues. This has allowed the municipalities to fund many of their infrastructure needs as well, thus reducing their reliance on property taxes.