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Lodgers’ tax increases with hotel occupancy

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Note: The Finance Committee meeting for Thursday has been canceled, according to a notice Wednesday by the city of Roswell. 

Roswell lodging businesses saw more business in March, but the occupancy rate and taxes collected were still below normal, according to reports to be presented to the Roswell City Council’s Finance Committee on Thursday.

The committee will hear a presentation on the latest tax collection reports at 9 a.m. Thursday in the large conference room of City Hall, 425 N. Richardson.

The meeting can be attended virtually through GoToMeeting. Using a computer, smartphone or tablet, go to https://global.gotomeeting.com/join/822397005. By phone, call 669-224-3412 and use access code 822-397-005. A recording of the virtual meeting will be posted on the city’s YouTube channel at a later date.

Reports for lodgers’ tax and convention center fee collections for April in the committee’s agenda packet show occupancy rates in Roswell lodging facilities at 48.1%. That’s an increase over March’s 37% and the highest that occupancy rates have been since the report for November 2019, when it was 58.2%. The reports reflect activity in the previous month.

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The city collected $97,232 in lodgers’ tax in the April report, $35,000 more than the prior month and $14,000 more than a year ago. However, it’s still $36,000 less than the same month two years ago, before the pandemic.

In convention center fees, the city collected $59,245 in the April report, which is $20,360 more than the prior month and $12,587 more than a year ago. That’s only about $7,400 less than two years ago, however.

Gross receipts tax collections continue to be higher than the city anticipated, with the May report — reflecting March activity — showing the city collected $3.3 million, or $454,000 more than it budgeted for. Overall, the city is $6.6 million ahead of its budgeted GRT collections in fiscal year 2021.

That $3.3 million is also ahead of the same month in previous years, according to the report, by 12.2% over fiscal year 2019 and 15.1% over fiscal year 2020. Comparing the fiscal year to date — July to May — the city has collected 3.3% more than in fiscal 2019, but is below fiscal 2020 collections by about 9%.

Also on the Finance Committee’s agenda for Thursday are consideration of a resolution to accept and approve the fiscal year 2020 audit. The audit was presented to the full city council at its May 13 meeting as a non-action item.

The committee will also consider a resolution on the sale of surplus property that will include vehicles from various city departments and another resolution on a new fire hydrant meter policy.

City/RISD reporter Juno Ogle can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or reporter04@rdrnews.com.

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