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  • What is the Educational Special Local Option Sales Tax (ESPLOST)?

    Providing new schools and school improvements, classrooms, student technology and student transportation is a major challenge for any community.  Coweta County has met this challenge since 1997 with a penny sales tax, approved by voters every five years.  The Coweta County Board of Education has called for a continuation of the Coweta Educational Special Local Option Sales Tax (ESPLOST) now in place, in a referendum set for Tuesday, November 2, 2021.

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    Our community’s ESPLOST revenues are 100% locally controlled and directed. Every penny raised goes to maintain and enhance the Coweta County School System for the benefit of our children. We firmly believe that a great education system is a key to a strong, vibrant, and successful community.
     
    The direct impact of these funds is clear and undeniable, in both the innumerable success stories of our county’s students and in the prosperous growth Coweta has seen over these past 25 years.

  • The school system does NOT receive 100% of property taxes collected. Significant portions are allocated to municipalities and public services, for example. Millage rates are what dictates the amount of property taxes apportioned to the school system and they were reduced in 2020 and rolled back to the lowest rate in the region in 2021.

    Contract to misconceptions, property taxes have NOT increased to the direct benefit of the school system. They have increased because property values have increased, exponentially in many cases. In order to maintain the low millage rates and resulting savings for Coweta homeowners, we must continue to factor in other sources of funding, the primary of which is ESPLOST.

    Rather than expecting Coweta homeowners alone to carry the weight, consider that those who patronize our ample retail amenities will contribute nearly four times as much via sales taxes collected on qualifying purchases. That's over 70% of total Coweta retail spend coming from out-of-county shoppers. View the retail study, here.

  • How does Coweta stack up when compared with neighboring counties, the West Georgia region, or the state of Georgia?  Let's find out:

     Of the 159 counties in Georgia, only 2 counties do not have an ESPLOST (Towns County - population 11,000 and Burke County - population 24,000).  The remaining 159 counties have approved an ESPLOST sales tax.

    ► Coweta County has a 7% county sales tax rate, broken down as follows: 4% state, 1% LOST (city/county), 1% SPLOST (city/county), and 1% ESPLOST (schools).

    ► 96 of 159 counties have an 8% county tax rate or higher (97 if you count Fulton, with 7.75%).  This is generally because they have the same sales tax mix as Coweta but also have transportation or other sales taxes in addition.

    ► 58 of 159 counties have a 7% tax rate.  This is where Coweta's tax rate, with ESPLOST included.  

    ► 61% of Georgia counties have a higher sales tax rate than Coweta.

    ► 4 counties have a 6% tax rate; 2.5% of Georgia counties have a lower sales tax rate than Coweta.

    ► Of the 4 Georgia counties that have a current tax rate of 6%, all 4 have a current ESPLOST (school sales tax) as one of their local sales taxes.

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  • The Coweta County School System exercises conservative budgeting and spending resulting in no public debt. The system has been recognized by the state of Georgia and the COGNIA accreditation agency for producing high academic results with relatively low property taxes and spending.

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  • The school board reduced property taxes allocated for education for two years in a row, from 18.59 mils to 17.3 mils in 2020, with a rollback to 17.14 mils in 2021, Not since 2001 has the CCSS enjoyed a homeowner millage rate this low. Neighboring districts can't compete: Fayette 19.33; Carroll 17.99; Troup 18.85; Clayton 20.0; Meriwether 17.9.

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  • The Coweta County School System is recognized as one of the highest performing school systems in the state of Georgia, with traditional educational approaches, high teacher retention rates, and strong parental involvement.

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  • Better students are better citizens. Better citizens make for a better community. ESPLOST provides excellent school facilities for 23,000 students through the support of all who shop in Coweta County.


  •  Central Educational Center (Coweta's College and Career Academy) Renovation and Expansion

     Band equipment replacement, additions, upgrades

     Re-roofing at Elm Street Elementary and Northgate H.S.

     SHIELD Systems and security cameras and other student safety upgrades

     Major HVAC upgrades like ionization

  • Coweta County School System Superintendent Dr. Evan Horton shares highlights of the improvements, enhancements, expansions, and upgrades completed in the last 25 years - made possible by ESPLOST revenue.

  • Hear directly from Dr. Horton about the ample beneficial projects completed because of local investment through ESPLOST.

  • If approved by Coweta voters on November 2, ESPLOST revenue collections will afford many significant projects to the direct benefit of Coweta students.  Learn more about the planned projects from Superintendent Horton.

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