Grapevine OKs hotel-motel tax rate increase

Hotels and motels in Grapevine will begin collecting another cent in occupancy taxes on every dollar starting Oct. 1.

Grapevine's City Council voted 6-1 to approve an ordinance with the increase at its regular meeting July 15. Place 5 Councilman Chris Coy was the lone dissenting vote.

P.W. McCallum, Grapevine Convention and Visitors Bureau executive director, said the increase from 6 percent to7 percent was a necessary step in maintaining enough revenue for the CVB to keep competing in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex tourism market. Because of their spending power, McCallum said the most worrisome competitors are Frisco, Addison, McKinney and Plano—all taxing at 7 percent—and Dallas, Fort Worth, Irving and Arlington—taxing at 9 percent.

"We have no area to provide incentives in our budget," McCallum said. "Otherwise we would have already been doing that. To that end we feel that it's very important for us to get back in the game. Not only are we feeling pressure from Irving, Dallas [and] Fort Worth ... in these summer and holiday periods, we simply need more dollars to be able to compete there. This 1 percent [provides] a valuable tool to attract new hotel construction."

McCallum said a 7 percent rate is authorized under state statutes, and the city's increase comes with enough available time to educate hotels before the start of collection, which coincides with the city's new fiscal year in October.

Additionally, the July 15 vote expands the city's definition of a hotel to include airport terminals where "minute suites" allow travelers to lodge between the hours of 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. in single rentable time blocks, McCallum said.

"They have what is legally termed an 'overnight' [designation]," McCallum said. "This gives the city an opportunity to collect occupancy tax on that as we do everything else in the overnight occupancy industry."

Although Mayor William Tate said he was loathe to raise taxes, he said the increase would not affect most residents.

By Sherelle Black
Sherelle joined Community Impact Newspaper in July 2014 as a reporter for the Grapevine/Colleyville/Southlake edition. She was promoted in 2015 to editor of the GCS edition. In August 2017, Sherelle became the editor of the Lewisville/Flower Mound/Highland Village edition. Sherelle covers transportation, economic development, education and features.


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