PTC to consider hike in hotel-motel tax from 6% to 8%

Peachtree City’s hotel-motel tax may be on the verge of an increase.

The City Council will consider Thursday night whether the city should hike the rate from the current 6 percent to 8 percent.

Based on the current 2009-2010 budget, the action would raise an additional $256,000 over the entire budget year, according to city estimates. Of that $256,000, the city’s would realize an increase in its general fund of $128,027, which is 50 percent above the $256,054 currently being collected under the 6 percent rate.

The 8 percent rate, the highest allowed under Georgia law, allows for up to 3 percentage points to be diverted to the general fund. Under the city’s current 6 percent rate, only 2 of those percentage points can be directed to the general fund.

If approved by council, the increase must be approved by the Georgia legislature before it could take effect.

Council will also consider reconfiguring the distribution of the revenue according to a 2008 law that allows it to set aside hotel-motel tax funds for “tourism product and development.”

As currently budgeted for this year, the city would then be able to set aside $192,000 for such tourism product development. The funds can be used on parks, trails and other recreation facilities in addition to a host of tourism functions performed by private businesses, including golf courses, sports stadiums, meeting and convention facilities, according to a memo city staff provided to council members.

The tourism product funds can also be used for visitor information and welcome centers such as the one operated by the Peachtree City Tourism Association.

Currently a part of the hotel-motel tax is distributed to the tourism association and another part goes to the city’s Airport Authority for the operation of Falcon Field. Those figures would decrease slightly under the proposed increase to 8 percent.

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