Gulf of Mexico
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FL - Visitors to northwest Florida could see more tax on overnight stays

Voters in Okaloosa County have approved extending the tourism development tax district to more than 3,000 condos, rental properties, and Airbnbs.

UPDATE (10/5/21 10:08 p.m. Voters in Okaloosa County have approved extending the tourism development tax district to more than 3,000 condos, rental properties, and Airbnbs.

Guests at those properties will now pay a 5% tax that was previously added to overnight stays in Destin, Fort Walton Beach, Mary Esther, Cinco Bayou, and Okaloosa Island.

The bed-tax money is used to promote tourism.

The unofficial results were posted Thursday night, the votes will be finalised Thursday at 5:00 p.m.

OKALOOSA COUNTY, Fla. (WKRG) — A historic vote by residents Tuesday night could add more than 3,000 condos and vacation properties to Okaloosa County’s Tourist Development Taxing District.

Currently, Okaloosa is one of five counties in the state to not have a tourism tax countywide. Until now, only overnight guests in Destin, Fort Walton Beach, Okaloosa Island, Mary Esther and Cinco Bayou have had tourism tax charges.

The vote is being made only by residents not currently in those district areas, including Shalimar, Niceville, Valparaiso, Crestview, Laurel Hill, more sections of Fort Walton Beach, Mary Esther and Unincorporated Okaloosa County.

If the residents vote in favor of the tax, called the bed tax, the money collected would be used for tourism development projects.

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