Highlands County Tourist Development Tax Collections Set to Outpace 2021’s Record Year
SEBRING, Fla. (March 21, 2022) – Three months into the current fiscal year 2021-2022 (October 1, 2021-December 31, 2021), the latest figures from the Florida Department of Revenue for Visit Sebring/Highlands County Tourist Development Council (TDC) show Tourist Development Tax (TDT) collections are outpacing collections above last fiscal year’s record of $1.1 million for 12 months. The TDT is a tax paid by visitors who stay in hotels or short-term rentals for six months or less. It is collected by the Florida Department of Revenue and is not paid by Highlands County residents.
For the first quarter of this fiscal year, revenues are more than $345,000 for three months, an increase of 38% over the same period in 2021 and 52% over 2020 numbers for the same time period.
Breaking it down by months, December 2021 tourism revenues were $120,563, nearly double December 2020 numbers and 28% higher than December 2019, prior to the pandemic. October 2021 collections were $116,328, about $40,000 more than October 2020, which was the highest revenue-generated in October until 2021.
“We are thrilled to see our three-month collection reports for this fiscal year showing tourism in our area outpacing any other year in Highlands County history,” said Visit Sebring/Highlands County TDC Lead Marketing Consultant Casey Hartt. “The TDC Board’s strategy of targeting sporting events to Highlands County during key need months is bringing more visitors to the region and generating higher TDT collections. This improves the economic vitality of our entire county and helps create a positive quality of life for our residents.” TDC grant-funded sporting events during the first quarter months (October-December 2021) were:
- October 2021 – GFNY Marathon and GFNY Cycling
- November 2021 – Visit Sebring Classic/Minor League Golf Tour and Citrus Golf Trail Open
- The TDC also hosted a state-wide Adventure EDU tourism program in Sebring during November in conjunction with VISIT FLORIDA. No direct funding was allocated.
- December 2021 – Spartan Race/Tough Mudder and Citrus Golf Trail Ladies Invitational
For more information, call the Visit Sebring office at (863) 402-6909 or visit www.VisitSebring.com.