Wednesday, April 1, 2020
56.6 F

CEP to spend $80,000 to support continuation of Penny Sales Tax beyond 2020

The Ocala/Marion Chamber and Economic Partnership (CEP) will spend $80,000 in their efforts to endorse the renewal of the Marion County Penny Sales Tax before it sunsets in 2020.

CEP President Kevin Sheilley made the remarks during the CEP’s annual presentation encore held at the College of Central Florida’s Dassance Fine Arts Center.

“Even though we were told repeatedly by all the experts that we had zero chance and that there was no way that voters in Marion County would approve a one-cent sales tax increase, 55 percent of the voters disagreed,” said Sheilley, of the approval in 2016.

After stating that the CEP endorses the new initiative to continue the tax, Sheilley indicated that the group would “be leading the effort again” for approval.

“We’re going to go raise $80,000 to tell the story about why this is important,” said Sheilley. He added that at least 30 percent of all of the revenue generated from the tax came from people not living in the Ocala Metro area.

“It’s from people that are passing through, who are tourists. It’s people who live outside our area and commute to this area every day,” said Sheilley.

The ordinance for the Penny Sales Tax, which has supported millions of dollars in infrastructure and first responder equipment improvements over the past few years, will come before the Marion County Commission later this month.

Last May, Marion County Commission Chair Michelle Stone provided an update on the impact of the Penny Sales Tax to business leaders.

“It may be only one penny out of almost every dollar spent in the county, but the funds collected through the Marion County’s Penny sales tax rolled out new patrol cars for sheriff’s deputies and provided compressed air breathing systems for firefighters,” said Stone. At the time, Stone indicated that crews had created and resurfaced 26.5 miles of roadway, representing 65,000 tons of paving materials.

Marion County Commissioners will consider the ordinance to extend the one-cent sales tax at their upcoming meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 18 at the Marion County-McPherson Governmental Complex, located at 601 SE 25th Avenue.

Photos in Ocala, Florida

Subscribe for email updates

* indicates required


Marion County Fire Rescue deploys three COVID-19 response rescue units

Marion County Fire Rescue has deployed the first three COVID-19 response rescues in the county.

Marion County firefighters battle Belleview blaze started by illegal backyard burn

Marion County firefighters fought a blaze in Belleview on Monday that erupted from an illegal burn.

25 Marion County residents test positive for COVID-19 with majority in Ocala

Twenty-five Marion County residents have now tested positive for the COVID-19 virus, with the majority of them – 17 – living in Ocala.

Ocala puts $250,000 in loan fund to help small businesses amid COVID-19 crisis

The Ocala City Council on Monday agreed to do its part to help small businesses that are struggling through the COVID-19 pandemic.

Foul-mouthed Belleview man admits to pushing woman

A 41-year-old belligerent Belleview man was arrested last week after he admitted to pushing a woman during a drunken argument.


Ocala businesses shutter doors in wake of COVID-19 fallout

Businesses across the city of Ocala shuttered their doors Friday morning in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic that has ground the nation to a halt. 

The Fiery Chef serving up ‘Ready to Eat Meals’ at new east Ocala location

The Fiery Chef has opened the doors on its new east Ocala location in hopes of serving up "Ready to Eat Meals" to the local community. 

Shuckin’ Shack Oyster Bar opens new Ocala location at Market Street at Heathbrook

Shuckin' Shack Oyster Bar opened the doors on their new Ocala location at Market Street at Heathbrook this week.

Mojo Grill is a must-visit restaurant in Ocala

The Mojo Grill and Catering Company, which has multiple locations throughout Marion, Lake and Sumter counties, is a must-visit restaurant in Ocala.

Epic Theatres opens doors at new Ocala location

Epic Theatres opened the doors on its new Ocala location earlier this month.

More Headlines