Early voting is already underway, and thousands of you will be deciding whether to vote for or against one of the most controversial projects in Nashville’s history.
The $5.4 billion dollar transit plan will be paid for by increasing taxes in four areas.
The first is a higher tax for hotels and motels. The tax currently stands at 6 percent but would increase to 6.25 percent in the first year and 6.375 percent by 2023.
If you have family or friends visiting you in Nashville and stay at a hotel that’s $250 per night, if this plan passes, they’d expect to pay $15.50 more per night on that room.
If you’re thinking that doesn’t apply to you, here’s something that likely will. The plan also calls for an increase on sales tax. That means a higher tax on clothing, electronics, makeup and other items.
The current sales tax stands at 9.25 percent. With the proposed plan, it would increase to 9.75 percent within the first year and then rise to 10.25 percent by 2023.
This increased tax rate ties Chicago for the highest in the country.
So even if you don’t live in Nashville, if you ever shop here or grab lunch here, you’ll pay that higher sales tax.
Local businesses will also be affected by tax increases. The city would add a 20 percent surcharge to the business tax. For example, if a business pays $1,000 in annual taxes, the owners could expect to pay $1,200 instead.
Rental cars would also see an increase in taxes. So if you have a friend in town or your car breaks down and you have to rent a car, here’s how the cost difference would affect you. Currently, rental cars are taxed at 1 percent, but this would be affected by a 20 percent surcharge to the tax. So, if you pay $20 per day for a rental car, you could expect to pay $20.24 instead.
Supporters of the transit plan say it will fix Nashville’s traffic issues. Those against it argue that it’s way too expensive and isn’t the best solution.
Early voting is already open at 11 locations in Davidson County. Click here for more information.
The transit plan will also be on the ballot on Election Day on May 1.
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