CRESTVIEW — The City Council unanimously approved extending the current local agreement for the distribution of gasoline taxes collected in Okaloosa County.
Since June 2003, Okaloosa County and nine municipalities have split the 6-cent-per-gallon county gasoline tax, with 60 percent of the revenue going to the county and the remaining 40 percent divided between the cities.
Under the formula, Fort Walton Beach receives 10.884 percent of the tax, Crestview receives 8.6734 percent, and Destin gets 8.7925 percent. Laurel Hill receives .5102 percent.
Under the current formula, Crestview has budgeted gas tax revenues of $519,000 this fiscal year.
With the agreement due to expire after 10 years, the cities have to approve extending it through December 2014, allowing time to prepare a new distribution formula.
If the cities do not approve the extension, the agreement turns to a state formula under which the county would receive 67 percent of the tax revenue and the cities would divide the remaining 33 percent.
"This has nothing to do with the proposed gas tax," City Clerk Betsy Roy emphasized. "This is an extension of an agreement we already have."
Despite Roy's explanation, some residents attending the Monday City Council meeting misunderstood and thought the council had voted to raise the gasoline tax.
"Just to be clear, this council took no action on a gas tax increase," Council President Robyn Helt said.
Contact News Bulletin Staff Writer Brian Hughes at 850-682-6524 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Twitter @cnbBrian.