HATTIESBURG, Miss. - In February city council approved 4-1 to ask state law makers for a 1% tax increase in Hattiesburg. Mayor Johnny DuPree said it can bring in millions of dollars in revenue and will help with infrastructure.
“Bringing in 10, 11, 12 million dollars a year, will help us drastically with the things we need to have done here in Hattiesburg" said DuPree.
According to DuPree if the legislature approves the tax increase, the city must hold a special election where at least 60% of voters approve the measure.
“We have been blessed over the last few years, that sale tax has been good" said DuPree.
He added, "When you look across the state, we are number two in sales tax in the state, even though we are number four in population."
Mayor DuPree said the whole point of the tax increase is to target out of town visitors who do not pay ad valorem taxes. The money that is generated will help with local infrastructure.
“Infrastructure, you know the things that we are going to respond to, streets, roads, bridges, sidewalks, water sewer, those kind of things" said DuPree.
He continued, "That (tax) will help us with the addition that we have to make things a little faster with our improvements on infrastructure.”
If the measure is not approved by the legislature, Mayor DuPree said he will continue to work with officials for a tax increase.
According to DuPree if the measure is not reviewed by the legislature this session, it should reviewed in the upcoming session.