BCC release on LOGT, Jail

Commission Moves Forward on Gas Tax Sharing, Land Purchase for Jail

At a series of meetings today, July 14, the Escambia County Board of County Commissioners moved forward on two major community issues: the distribution of the local option gas tax and the purchase of the McDonald Shopping Center as the expanded county jail complex.

Local Option Gas Tax

After two and half hours of deliberation, the county agreed to a distribution formula that would guarantee the city of Pensacola a 6.9 percent share of the local option gas tax passed in 2015 for a period of 10 years.

With a focus on compromise and working with city leaders, the commission voted to submit an interlocal agreement to the city that would allocate an additional 8.63 percent, or approximately $730,000, of the local option gas tax specifically for resurfacing projects in city council districts 5, 6 and 7. This will allow the city of Pensacola to meet its infrastructure goals while addressing concerns in economically-challenged areas of the city. This formula will also allow a slight increase for the town of Century of .81 percent.

Estimated Annual Distribution of LOGT

City of Pensacola – 6.9 percent or approximately $590,000, with up to 15.62 percent or approximately $1.3 million through the proposed interlocal agreement
Town of Century – .81 percent or approximately $68,000
Escambia County – 83.66 percent or approximately $7.1 million

Jail Location

The commission also voted to purchase 14.65 acres located on the southeast corner of Fairfield Drive and Pace Boulevard, commonly known as the McDonald Shopping Center, to be developed as the site of the expanded county jail complex for the purchase price of $4.5 million. The motion also included:

The county will retain a consultant to develop a master plan for economic development and neighborhood revitalization within a 12-block diameter of the intersection of Pace Boulevard and Fairfield Drive.
The development of a youth center in the vicinity of the property that is similar in size, design and facilities as the Wedgewood Community Center.

Reserving approximately 300 feet of road frontage for economic development, with an emphasis on small businesses and businesses owned by minorities and women.

The design of the expanded jail complex will be “street-friendly” and not institutional.

Today’s decision helps move the construction of a new jail facility forward significantly, and the commission vowed to work with current tenants and leaseholders in their transition as the project progresses. Property owners will not be expected to vacate until six to 12 months from now.