Savannah City Council approves LOST offer, sending to Chatham Co. Commission for consideration

Savannah, Ga.
Savannah, Ga.(WTOC)
Published: Dec. 16, 2022 at 6:24 AM EST
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Savannah City Council has unanimously approved a new Local Option Sales Tax (LOST) distribution offer.

The new offer is now being sent to Chatham County Commission for consideration.

If approved, the County’s portion of LOST proceeds would go up from 24 percent in the first year (2023) to 31 percent by the fifth year (2027) in the proposed 10 year agreement.

“I applaud the City Council for understanding the importance of making a formal, fair offer to the Chatham County Commission for LOST distribution,” said Mayor Van Johnson. “We understood the needs the County is facing with regard to countywide services and this offer exemplifies the willingness of the municipalities to be good partners while allowing time for municipalities to adjust to a significant change in LOST distribution.”

LOST is a one percent sales tax that you pay in Chatham County, whether you’re in the unincorporated part or in a city.

Negotiations have dragged-on between Chatham County and the eight cities within it for several weeks, with both sides of the deal pushing for more money.

“We began LOST negotiations six months ago 430 total percentage points away from one another and today we stand only 7 percentage points apart,” said Savannah City Manager Joseph Melder. “We’ve made a tremendous amount of progress, and with today’s unanimous vote by City Council, we are hopeful that our partners at Chatham County will recognize this as a fair and reasonable agreement that will allow all municipalities and the county to meet our service delivery needs and keep property taxes as low as possible. Time is running out and we must reach an agreement as soon as possible.”

The distribution offer is as follows:


We’ll keep you updated as the process continues.