By: Emma Wheeler | WCTV Eyewitness News
June 5, 2018
VALDOSTA, Ga. (WCTV) -- South Georgia residents are preparing to feel the impact of the controversial T-SPLOST. Voters passed the one percent sales tax in the primary election last month.
The new sales tax will become officially added October 1 across the 18-county South Georgia region. Now, those counties are getting ready for the transportation projects made possible through the incentive.
In Valdosta, city officials have prioritized many of the projects on the list. The T-SPLOST is broken down into three phases.
Phase one will be dedicated solely to a new air traffic control tower at the Valdosta Regional Airport and is expected to begin later this year once funds have been raised, running through 2021.
Phase two will follow, running through 2024. Projects included in phase two are intersection improvements on S. Patterson Street at Griffin Avenue, St. Augustine Road at Gornto Road and Baytree Road at Gornto Road. The widening of Old Clayetteville Road is also included in phase two.
Phase three is slated from 2025-2028. Those projects are the widening of Forrest Street and Country Club Drive, intersection and signal improvements on St. Augustine Road at Norman Drive and the St. Augustine Road Railroad project.
The T-SPLOST was approved to run for ten years, but city officials said if the money is raised before then, the additional sales tax could end sooner.
"It's a ten-year tax, but because Lowndes County gets a lot of tourism, a lot of people stopping in, it's really just until that full amount is collected," said Ashlyn Becton, City of Valdosta Public Information Officer.
The city has released a full breakdown of the T-SPLOST projects. That information can be found on the city website.