The City of Williams Lake will be providing a letter supporting the request of the Cariboo Chilcotin Coast Tourism Association (CCCTA) for a 3% hotel tax following a 4-1 vote Tuesday night.
Councilor Laurie Walters says they have had lots of healthy discussion on the subject.
“Not once but twice and a lot of questions that the City needed or that the City had that needed to be answered, the CCTA came back with that. We need this, our region needs this. In order for tourism to be an important cog in the wheel, we need to have the resources to do that otherwise we are just going to be on the decline instead of growing.”
Councillor Craig Smith did not support the motion saying that the self-imposed tax being voted on by hotels should be 100% in agreement.
Councilor and hotel owner, Scott Nelson had declared a conflict of interest and did not vote on the matter.
He was one of 4 hotel owners (Best Western, Super 8, Ramada, Lakeside Motel, Coast Motel, and Valley View Motel) who signed a petition withdrawing their support for the tax until there is the opportunity to sit down over the next year with the various parties and develop a plan to ensure there is no duplication.
The CCTA requires the signature approval from 51% of the eligible properties and 51% of the eligible rooms to collect the Municipal Regional District Tax for a five-year term.
The Cariboo-Chilcotin is the only region in the province according to Councillor Jason Ryll that does not administer any kind of hotel tax which provides funding for local tourism marketing, programs, and projects.
Councillor Ivan Bonnell was absent from the meeting.
The letter of petition from the hotel owners in Williams Lake will be referred to the Cariboo-Chilcotin-Coast Tourism Association for their information.