Tourist Development Council

Grant Funding Programs

The state statute that regulates the funds used by the TDC is Florida State Statute 125.0104 -Tourist development tax; procedure for levying; authorized uses; referendum; enforcement. Okeechobee County TDC is 100% funded by the Tourist Development Tax (TDT). The TDT is a countywide 3% tax applied to short term overnight stays during a duration of less than 6 months.  The TDT is not a tax collected by residents unless they are staying in local lodging but, rather, is paid by Okeechobee County visitors. Per the state statute which states that funds must be used to “promote and advertise tourism in the State of Florida and nationally and internationally; however, if tax revenues are expended for an activity, service, venue, or event, the activity, service, venue, or event shall have as one of its main purposes the attraction of tourists as evidenced by the promotion of the activity, service, venue, or event to tourists”.  (“Tourist” means a person who participates in trade or recreation activities outside the county of his or her permanent residence or who rents or leases transient accommodations”).

Each year's funding review typically begins during the Summer planning sessions.  If interested in applying for grant funding be sure to reach out to the Tourist Development Council at tourism@co.okeechobee.fl.us. These applications are reviewed by the Tourist Development Council Advisory Board, all decisions are final and funding is limited.  We look forward to hearing from you regarding this opportunity!

Application Deadline is July 31, 2024

Host Grants:

Promotional Activity Event funding through the Tourism Development Council of Okeechobee is specifically intended for events that increase tourism and visitors to Okeechobee County. Events that apply for this funding should have the majority of participants and/or spectators from out of the Okeechobee County area.

Funding eligibility expectations include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Events that have a history of or the potential to generate hotel/motel/campground/RV room nights
  • Multiple day events (this can include pre-events that guarantee overnight stays or a series of events located in Okeechobee County)
  • Special consideration will be given to events that will generate regional, state, national, or international media exposure for Okeechobee County. 

The 2024/2025 Funding Application for events occurring between 10/1/24-9/30/25 is available here.

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