F’ville may hike hotel-motel tax
Fayetteville is looking at mimicking other Georgia cities by increasing the tax on hotel and motel rooms up to 8 percent compared to the current 5 percent rate. The measure will have to receive approval from the Ga. General Assembly before the increase can be considered.
Director of Community Development Brian Wismer at the Jan. 16 meeting said the current rate of 5 percent on rooms was set in 2001. The legislature in 2008 paved the way for rates to increase to 8 percent, said Wismer.
“Most of our neighbors have gone to 8 percent,” Wismer said, citing the increase on the room tax by Peachtree City, Stockbridge and McDonough.
Wismer noted that the tax would be applicable to the first 30 days of a hotel stay and that at least half of the additional tax amount would have to be spent on promotional or advertising efforts by the city to generate additional revenue for the local economy, including hotels.
Mayor Greg Clifton said the council can act on the local amendment if the request is approved by the General Assembly. The earliest time frame for considering the increase would be during the summer, Clifton added.
Clifton said he spoke with both hotels in the city and found one having “no problem” with an increase while the other “did not like it.”
Prior to the unanimous vote, Councilman Paul Oddo said he was not sure he agrees with the increase but he did agree with giving the city the availability to increase the tax.
Assuming the request is adopted by the General Assembly, the city will conduct two public hearings on the issue prior to making a decision on the matter.
Once increased, the council has the ability to lower the tax rate in the future.