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Forsyth County votes to extend SPLOST again

Forsyth County voted on Tuesday to extend a special purpose local option sales tax, or SPLOST VIII.

Voters approved the special election item with 64.68 percent of the vote, continuing a 1-cent sales tax that is projected to have a six-year total of about $274 million.

SPLOST was first approved in Forsyth County in 1987 and has been continued six times since.

This time, SPLOST VIII is expected to help fund several county projects including pavement widening, development and improvements for the Big Creek Greenway renovation or development of new county parks and facilities, a west precinct for the county sheriff’s office and $100 million to pay off bond debt from the $200 million transportation bond approved by voters in 2014.

The city of Cumming will get about 5.3 percent of SPLOST funds, or about $13.5 million. City projects include the creation of a new “northern bypass” that would connect Hwy. 9 to Pilgrim Mill Road; improvements and maintenance to existing roads, expansion of the city’s aquatic center and the arena at the Cumming Fairgrounds; and the creation of a more accessible veterans memorial in the city.