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Culver City Seeks to Increase Hotel Tax, Some Fear Local Tourism Would Decrease
Amid these belt tightening times, Santa Monica wants to raise the sales tax and Culver City has a similar idea, but they want to hit up tourists for some extra money instead. The City Council Monday night took steps to place a measure on the November ballot that would increase the Transient Occupancy Tax rate from 12 percent to 14 percent, according to the Los Angeles Wave. The tax places a levy on people who buy lodging for 30 days or less. The move has hotel owners and operators worried because surrounding cities have a more costly tax. Los Angeles, Beverly Hills, West Hollywood and Santa Monica all have a 14 percent tax. “It is a selling point that we have been using for years,” said Bill Reider of the Radisson Hotel about their lower tax rate, “and when we lose that I’m afraid that we are going to lose a considerable amount of group business in the city and possibly a considerable amount of corporate business from our local negotiated rates.”
Culver City has a $2 million budget shortfall and the new tax rate, if approved by voters, could bring in nearly $500,000 annually. City staff said travelers do not base their room bookings on the tax, but the room rate.