Rail poll: Property taxes are too high, but voters would support a sales tax
PINELLAS COUNTY -- County voters wouldn't want to fund a light rail system if it meant raising property taxes, but they be willing to pay for it through higher sales taxes, according to a poll of 500 registered county voters commissioned by the Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority.
The PSTA board will discuss the poll Wednesday, but a presentation says 62 percent of voters would favor a 1-cent sales tax increase if property taxes were reduced, too. About 31 percent would oppose it.
The poll quizzed registered voters on their opinions about busing improvements, a combination of busing and light rail, and various funding options, including raising property taxes, a gas tax, a sales tax, or a sales tax paired with a decrease in property taxes.
Rail advocates have sought a referendum as early as 2010 to hike the sales tax to build a better transit system.
The telephone survey was conducted by Fallon Research Aug. 30 to Sept. 3 and has a margin of error of 4.38 percentage points.
David DeCamp, Times staff writer