HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WDAM) - Projects like the renovating of batting cages at Vernon Dahmer Park are dependent on the 1% sales tax on hotels and restaurants inside the City of Hattiesburg.
When COVID-19 negatively impacted hotels and restaurants, the tax revenue saw a reduction as well.
“Obviously, hotels took a significant hit in the months of March and April. Luckily, the restaurants make up the greater portion of the 1%,” said Mayor Toby Barker.
The city will not truly know the effects until the economy is back to normal, but Barker believes the projects aren’t in jeopardy.
“For the year though we’re still above what we needed in terms of baseline,” Barker said. “We depend about $100,000 a month, so for the first nine months of this fiscal year we’re at 965. So we’re still on track to complete projects.”
Barker does not rule out delays for some of the projects on the list to be completed.
“I think you’re going to see that happen. I think we’ve budgeted enough to do a certain number of projects,” Barker said. “I think it’s 18 or 19 projects over three years, so some of those projects may be delayed to later in that three years, but ultimately I think most of those projects will be achieved.”