While many Oconee County registered voters have not yet decided how they will vote on the Transportations Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax that will be on the ballot next summer, those who have already decided are split on the issue.
Voters are much more concerned about economic issues, including unemployment and the collapse of the local housing market, than they are about traffic or transportation issues.
Only a few mention high taxes as the most important problem facing the county.
These are the findings of a scientific survey conducted in late October and early November by graduate students enrolled in two sections of a social science research methods class in the Grady College of Journalism and Mass Communication at the University of Georgia.
The students surveyed 526 registered voters in the county. Most of the questions asked dealt with the opinions of the voters on a variety of national issue, but two dealt specifically with Oconee County.
That split of opinion on the T-SPLOST tax stands in contrast to votes on special tax issues in the county going back to 1982. Voters have cast ballots12 times on sales tax issues and renewals since that time, and they have never given any of them less than 61.9 percent support.
For more information, go to Oconee County Observations.