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Board seeks right to raise lodging tax to 5%

The Middlesex County Board of Supervisors (BOS) approved a resolution on Wednesday, November 7, to ask the Virginia General Assembly to allow the county to increase its “allowable transient occupancy tax” from 2% to 5%.

Supervisors approved a 2% lodging tax for its FY19 budget, but had originally wanted to seek the maximum allowable amount of 5%. By right, the BOS could only approve a 2% lodging tax and had to get the state legislature’s approval for the additional 3%.

In January 2018, after approving a resolution to request a 5% lodging tax, the board was told by State Delegate Keith Hodges that his bill docket was filled prior to him receiving the county’s resolution and the BOS would have to wait a year for the request for the additional 3% to be heard.

The board agreed during the FY19 budget talks to pursue the additional 3% for the FY 20 budget. The resolution states that “any excess over 2% . . . shall be designated and spent solely for tourism and travel, marketing of tourism or initiatives that, as determined after consultation with board of supervisors.”

When asked what else the funds could be used for, county administrator Matt Walker said the tax revenue could be used for certain projects approved by the Economic Development Authority and to aid in the cost of providing “campgrounds” with water and sewer. The county’s three campgrounds will be one of the largest sources of revenue coming from the additional 3% tax.

The board voted unanimously to approve the resolution.

posted 11.14.2018

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