Sales tax increase proposal moves forward in Pinellas County, approved by PSTA

PINELLAS COUNTY, Fla. - The Pinellas County Transit Authority  on Wednesday voted to go ahead with a proposed sales tax referendum that will likely wind up on the ballot next year.  The proposal would tack on an extra penny to the existing local sales tax.

The measure now goes to the Pinellas County Commission which is expected to place the question before voters on November 4, 2014.

If voters approve the increase, the local sales tax would go from seven percent to eight percent.

The money would be used to fund a light rail system from Clearwater to St. Petersburg and expand bus service.  Supporters also argue the money is needed just to keep basic services intact.

Wednesday's vote followed three hours of public comment.

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