This is an excellent question. The state of Florida’s Department of Revenue, Florida statutes, and examples set forth by existing municipalities in their interlocal agreements, all provide a specific and fair way of determining the tax dollars that belong to a local municipality.
As part of the unincorporated county, local tax dollars go into a number of different “pools.” Some of these pools are at the state level, and some at the county. Distribution of the “fair share” state pooled funds back to counties and municipalities is calculated each year by the Florida Department of Revenue, and distributed accordingly.
A portion of these state-shared revenues, calculated for Escambia’s entire unincorporated population, currently go to the county. By incorporating, the population is no longer counted as part of the unincorporated county. The portion of state-shared funds would be recalculated by the Department of Revenue, and directed instead to the new municipality.
Municipal governments within Florida use a predetermined formula to calculate the “fair share” of gas tax revenue from the counties to municipalities. Established through an interlocal agreement, this formula takes into account the number of lane-miles of roads that the local government is responsible to maintain. The county provides these funds, which are then used by the municipality to maintain the roads under their care.
Additionally, the state of Florida dictates that counties cannot charge MSTU ad valorem tax line items within municipalities. Our community as part of the unincorporated county, pays these taxes (approximately 1.5 mills worth). As a municipality, the county could no longer charge these taxes. Florida statute says such taxes belong to the municipality, not the county.