City to look into hospitality tax

  • Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Goose Creek City Council is considering how a hospitality tax would work.
Councilmembers discussed the topic during an April 24 workshop in the council chambers.
While Goose Creek City Administrator Dennis Harmon said that the city will use every dime from its tax increment fund to pay for building two new fire stations, “We’re looking at some other revenue streams. One of the most popular revenue generators across the state is a hospitality tax.”
Harmon said it is an efficient, effective way of collecting revenue, and that city officials have looked at how other municipalities have used hospitality tax.
By putting a two-percent tax on prepared food and beverage sales, the city should collect an estimated $950,000 - $1 million per year. Harmon suggested that if the city adopts such a tax that it be used on the city’s capital needs.
“We’re going in debt for the fire stations,” Councilmember Marguerite Brown said. “We need to all be thinking what is important. I’m not against the tax. I want to know what it’s going to be used for.”
“We’re going to have to hear back from our constituents,” Mayor Michael Heitzler said. “They’ll want to know what it’s for . . . I expect very little taxpayer pushback.”
Heitzler suggested compiling a printed list of items for which the tax would be used. A draft of the hospitality tax will be put in the form of an ordinance for a public hearing at a later time, according to Heitzler.

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