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The staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Tampa Chamber releases transportation poll -- kinda



TAMPA — The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce teased to the results from a recent transportation poll in a news release Thursday, but was unable to provide specifics.

Hillsborough County Commissioners are poised this month to vote on whether to put a half-cent sales tax for transportation on the November ballot.

While six of the commissioners have voiced their stances — three in support, three against — Commissioner Victor Crist said he wanted more insight into whether the public would vote for the tax before he made his decision.

The chamber released sparse information from the poll, conducted by SEA Polling & Strategic Design. They did not share the crosstabs, methodology, the questions asked or how many people were polled.

“Because we haven’t shared that with the leadership yet, we can’t share it with the public just yet,” chamber spokeswoman Felicia Harvey said.

Chamber CEO Bob Rohrlack said the poll took place from March 28-31. He said more details would not be shared ntil next week at the earliest.

All the chamber would release was these two statistics:

* The issue of supporting a half cent sales tax was raised at four different points in the overall survey, with answers of support ranging from 47% to 54%.

* 88% of respondents said improving the transportation system in Hillsborough County as either a “very serious” or “somewhat serious” priority.

The results are consistent with a Go Hillsborough poll the county released a year ago that showed 52 percent would vote for a half-cent sales tax. Consultants polled 600 county residents in April 2015.

Rohrlack said he was "pleased to see" so many respondants agree that transportation either is, or is becoming, a problem, but that he wasn't necessarily surprised by the range of support for a sales tax.

"That really has been the sticking point for the ongoing discussion of transportation," Rohrlack said. "There are almost as many ideas for proposed solutions as there are cars on the road."

[Last modified: Thursday, April 7, 2016 9:39pm]


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