Delaware County voters decided Tuesday to approve a 3 percent bed tax on guests staying in county hotels in order to make improvements at the county fairgrounds.

The tax issue passed with 40,139 “yes” votes against 24,994 “no” votes.

The five-year bed tax is expected to generate $200,000 annually which would be earmarked for infrastructure improvements to the fairgrounds, according to a fact sheet issued by the “Friends of Your Delaware County Fair.”

Bonds issued against bed tax income could go toward electrical grid upgrades, safety repairs to the grandstands, improvements to buildings, roads, plumbing, storm sewer drainage, and Americans with Disabilities Act-compliant restrooms.

The Delaware County Fairgrounds were first built in 1938, with several buildings nearly 80 years old.

Without the improvements, Delaware County Agricultural Society members have said the future of the 79th annual county fair and its premiere event, the 71st annual Little Brown Jug harness race, could be in jeopardy.

Staff Report