The Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority unanimously agreed to ask the Pinellas County Commission to put a tax for bus transit expansion and light rail on the ballot.
The vote came after 3 hours of public comment with speakers for and against the idea.
Five out of 7 commissioners say they support the referendum but PSTA spokesman Bob Lasher says this is only the beginning.
"Some of our board members said this is just the very first step, there's a whole lot of water yet to go before we cross the other bridges," he says.
The one-cent sales tax would fund a proposed 24 mile track between downtown Clearwater, Gateway area, St. Petersburg, and Tropicana Field.
Hillsborough County residents rejected a tax increase for light rail in 2011.