A SPLOST Here and a SPLOST There
Will a stop order be placed by next SPLOST vote?
Local governments do not have the luxury of printing money the way the federal government does, so they have to find more creative ways of separating money from the citizens. In eons past, somebody came up with the idea to tax property and use the revenue to provide the services and infrastructure demanded by the citizens.
As the size and scope of local government grows with more demands from the citizens, property taxes increase. Several years ago, the idea of a SPLOST came along to allow the citizens to vote on how they wanted to be separated from their money.
SPLOST, or special purpose local option sales tax, became a popular way to exact more money from the people. Rather than having to pay more in an annual property tax, the people could decide that when they made a purchase at the store, they would pay an additional penny that would go into a special fund designated for a certain purpose. Seemed like a good idea at the time.
In Gwinnett, the SPLOST spreads the tax collecting to any and all people who shop anywhere in the county. This idea worked so well it was expanded to help relieve the burden of a school tax by having something known as an E-SPLOST. With the letter “E” in front of the SPLOST, the money would be reserved just for education purposes. With Gwinnett County having the largest school district in the state, once again the idea of an additional penny paid out of pocket when a consumer makes a purchase works great.
We will soon be voting on whether or not to have a T-SPLOST. The “T” standing for transportation which would mean the tax collected on the T-SPLOST would be reserved for transportation needs.
At some point, all these pennies add up to dollars and people begin to question if they are getting their money's worth.
A SPLOST is not a permanent tax. Each SPLOST has an expiration date. In the past, citizens have routinely voted to extend the SPLOSTs. However, some people are now beginning to speak out and say “Enough” when it comes to voting on more taxes.
With a SPLOST here and a SPLOST there, the citizens are beginning to sense they are being soaked with higher taxes. From where I stand, the next vote by the citizens of Dacula might return a stop order on the SPLOST, the E-SPLOST and the T-SPLOST.