SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – Aside from mayor and city council races on many city ballots, there are two referendums being considered across Chatham County.
1) SPLOST 7 is the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax. The tax has been passed six times since the 1980’s and provides a penny sales tax which goes to Chatham County first and the County then divides up the tax money to cities across the area. Municipalities support the tax because leaders say it provides an important source of funding for important capital projects.
2) Freeport Referendum – involves an inventory tax that is charged to businesses known as “fulfillment centers.” These businesses store, pack and ship goods (that most come in to the Port of Savannah). But the tax is passed onto clients which are often Internet companies who in turn normally pass it on to consumers. The referendum would eliminate this inventory tax. Supporters say a “yes” vote means manufacturing and e-commerce businesses will locate in the area and expand jobs at existing warehouses and distribution centers. They also say that Chatham County is currently missing out because other states and even some counties in Georgia do not charge this tax. Opponents say they are concerned that this exemption on inventory is only being offered to the e-commerce business sector..