NewsLocal News


Blueprint Agency funding for local athletics

Posted at 6:57 PM, Feb 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-02-21 19:29:21-05

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — In 2014, Leon County voters re-approved a penny sales tax for the Blueprint Intergovernmental Agency that's made up of Tallahassee City, and Leon County Commissioners. So one cent on every dollar you spend in Leon County helps fund Blueprint projects.

There are two ways blue print money can be spent: infrastructure, which is 66% of the budget, and Economic Development which is 12% of the tax. The remaining money goes back to the city and county.

Economic development should be used to stimulate the economy by creating jobs or tourism opportunities that would draw people into the county.

In the past Blueprint has funded projects for sports tourism, giving money to Tallahassee colleges.

Heather Mitchell is the VP of Institutional Advancement for Tallahassee Community.

"When you throw the basketball into the hoop, sometimes the shot clock would stop working," said Mitchell.

Mitchell said that their athletic facilities were in need of an upgrade when they asked Blueprint for $1 million in CARES Act funding in 2022 of which they matched with $2 million of their own money.

"Our hope is by doing that with our field house and our outdoor facilities, we'll be able to invite tournaments to come and play, which will bring revenue into the community," said Mitchell.

Mitchell said improvements were needed to update things likes their locker rooms, indoor batting cages, add covered seating for their outdoor facilities.

In an agenda item, Blueprint listed the potential economic impact for that project at $1.4 million.

Right now Blueprint is working on 27 project infrastructure projects. Susan Emmanuel who works for the agency says that those projects were decided on by voters.

"Voters voted on 27 projects all together, and the board helps prioritize those projects," said Emmanuel. "When you voted on the one cent sales tax extension, you voted for those 27 projects, a long with a portion of the proceeds going to economic development across our community."

The big decision to be made now, funding 20 million dollars in renovations for Doak Campbell Stadium. Florida state has requested the funds to help with repairs and maintenance to the 70 year-old stadium.

That vote will take place on Thursday at 3:00 p.m. at City Hall in Tallahassee.