The TDC/CVB pulled together an impressive report on Bed Tax collections in competing destinations.
Numbers are clear: Tourists visiting Panama City Beach pay less bed tax than in most other vacation destinations in Florida and the Southeast. The full report will be posted here as soon as possible; email firstname.lastname@example.org if you want me to email it to you..
There is no doubt we could improve TDC revenues by adding 2 cents, and the only people who would notice are the Bed Tax Collectors themselves. (Sorry BTCs, I love you and am on your side, wishing you didn’t have to collect it all by yourselves, but that’s a bigger fight I’d join you on…)
There were other discussions of increasing TDC/CVB revenue, such as marketing co-ops and adding a new employee to collect back-taxes from the owners who are not paying up, but the 1 to 2 cent bed tax increase is by far the real revenue stream. And it’s the topic that supposedly was the crack that caused the previous TDC Board breakup. So it’s a hotty alright.
Since this is such a debated topic, please join in the comments and give your 2 cents on increased Bed Taxes (Revenue) for Bay County. PCBDaily.com gives us all a voice on these issues, and you wouldn’t believe how many local business people and residents read this website and subscribe to the weekly newsletter. So whether you’re on the TDC Board, a Bed Tax Collector, a concerned tourist, or a reporter for the major media outlets in town… if you have a solution or opinion on our Bed Tax and Tourist Development Revenue, let your voices be heard!
Here’s my 2 cent offering to the Revenue Enhancement Committee.
1. Raise the tax 2 cents, build sports and special events facilities only
2. The TDC serves Bay County. Bay County serves tourists and thrives on tourism. All hotels and motels in Bay County should be required to collect the Bay County Bed Tax. I pay bed tax in Tuscaloosa, AL, and they’re no where near a beach.
3. Increase percentage of Bed Tax spent on product, and less on promotion. All our competitors in the report spend more on beach/product improvement than on advertising and promotions. We should follow that lead. They have a better product as a result.