📸 Okaloosa Public Information Office

Okaloosa County adopts the TDD countywide expansion ordinance

📸 Okaloosa Public Information Office

On September 21, 2021, the Okaloosa Board of County Commissioners unanimously approved to adopt an ordinance and amend the Tourism Development Plan to the proposed expanded footprint.

With ballots already hitting mailboxes, if voters outside of the current bed-taxing district elect to expand the tourism district from its current footprint south of the bay, the adopted ordinance will include a monetary set-aside of 12.5% of TDC revenues for all cities as an annual allotment for their tourism-related projects.

  • This could include parks, trails, boat launches, soccer fields and other recreational improvements that would support tourists and residents alike.
  • The allocation is directly tied to an interlocal agreement mentioned in the ordinance.

“I could not be more pleased with County leadership and the collaborative efforts of the municipalities within the county,” said Board Chairman Carolyn Ketchel. “Coming together for a consensus on these decisions now will positively impact the county as a whole.”

📸 Okaloosa Public Information Office

Additional changes to the ordinance include a change to in-house collection beginning January 1, 2022, which is currently collected by the Department of Revenue. 

  • Tourist Development Tax (TDT) dollars are currently reported and remitted to the Florida Department of Revenue, which then distributes the funds to the County.
  • With the Local Collection Method, counties gain valuable insight and knowledge relating to where the TDT dollars are collected, which cannot be done through the current collection method.

It also updates the Tourism Development Plan to incorporate additional types of tourism such as:

  • Ecotourism
  • Sports tourism
  • Agritourism
  • And other types of tourism expected in the expansion area
📸 Okaloosa Public Information Office

The approved Ordinance and related interlocal agreements are the result of many meetings and extensive coordination between all of the local governments.

“The nine municipalities and the County came together in workshops, most recently on September 8, 2021, to achieve a consensus,” said April Sarver, Public Information Officer for Okaloosa. “Today, the municipalities have reached a general consensus of approval.”

More details on the current special election can be found at TourismWorksForOkaloosa.com

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