One of the biggest campaigns during this election season will be a push for Orange County voters to increase their taxes for transportation.
Mayor Jerry Demings said voters have a chance in November to help fund the solution.
“We’re behind now, and so we have to play catch-up,” Demings said. “And the only way that we can solve this issue, a multi-billion dollar deficit that we have, is to solve the transit problems.”
A PAC, called Moving Orange County Forward, will spend nearly $2 million to convince voters to choose “yes” to a one-cent sales tax increase for transportation.
People will be going door-to-door to spread the word.
The county said traffic delays cost commuters over $1,200 in 2019. Before the pandemic, commuters spend an average of 61 hours a year in traffic congestion.
Commuters said getting from point A to B feels more like A to Z, and something needs to be done.
Some say a campaign that answers their questions could win them over but others have their minds set.
Officials said the hike could bring in $600 million a year for some much-needed improvements on local roads, including widening roads and modernizing signals.
“Thousands of people are moving here each week within Orange County,” Demings said. “And then thousands are coming here to visit each week.”
If the tax referendum is passed, the revenue would be collected starting next January.