Tourism Marketing District Extended


>>>>PEGGY: FOR THE NEXT FOUR DECADES A 2%
HOTEL ROOM TAX WILL BE ASSESSED AND COLLECTED BY HOTELIERS IN SAN DIEGO.
THE TAX EXPECTED TO YIELD ABOUT 30ÊMILLION DOLLARS A YEAR WILL BE USED TO PROMOTE TOURISM.
BUT NONE OF THAT REVENUE WILL GO TO THE CITY’S GENERAL FUND.
JOINING ME TO TALK ABOUT THE PROS AND CONS OF THIS KIND OF TAX IS MY GUEST JORDAN BARRY,
PROFESSOR OF TAX LAW AT THE UNIVERSITY OF SAN DIEGO LAW SCHOOL.
JORDAN, THANKS FOR BEING HERE. THIS 2% ROOM TAX IS GOING TO BE ASSESSED BY
SEVERAL O HO TELLS OVER OCCUPANCY OF 30 AND IT WILL BE PAID FOR BY HOTEL GUESTS.
UM, WHAT ARE THE CONCERNS ABOUT TAXING THESE HOTELIERS ACTUALLY TAXING PEOPLE THIS WAY?
>>>>JORDAN BARRY: THE KEY THING TO REMEMBER HERE IS THAT THE TAX HAS SORT OF BEEN IN EXISTENCE,
THE DIFFERENCE IS HOW THE MONEY IS GOING TO BE MOVED.
BEFORE IT WENT TO THE CITY, AND THE CITY WAS LARGELY PUTTING THAT MONEY INTO PROMOTIONAL
EFFORTS FOR TOURISM. NOW IT’S GOING TO THE HOTELIERS TO DO BASICALLY
A SIMILAR THING, BUT IT’S GOING TO BE IN HOTELIER HANDS.
>>>>PEGGY: I THINK THAT’S ONE OF THE CONCERNS. PRIVATE INDIVIDUALS ARE TAXING PEOPLE.
IS THAT LEGAL?>>>>JORDAN BARRY: RIGHT, SO, I MEAN, I WOULDN’T
THINK OF IT AS THE HOTELIERS ARE TAXING PEOPLE. I WOULD THINK THEY ARE GETTING PUB PUBLIC
TAX MONEYS AND THEY ARE PRIVATE AGENTS. SOME PEOPLE FIND THAT VERY CONCERNING.
OTHERS THINK PERHAPS IT’S LESS OF A PROBLEM.>>>>PEGGY: WHAT IF SOMETHING GOES WRONG,
PRICE, GOUGING, OR WHATEVER. CAN THE CITY TAKE BACK CONTROL LEGALLY OF
THIS TAX INITIATIVE?>>>>JORDAN BARRY: I DON’T KNOW ABOUT THE
EXACT DETAILS OF THAT. I WOULD IMAGINE IT’S PARTICIPATE HEART FOR
THE CITY TO GET THAT MONEY BACK. MOST LIKELY IT WILL STAY IN THE HOTELIERS
HANDS.>>>>PEGGY: ARE THERE OTHER LAWS OUT THERE
THAT WOULD PREVENT LIKE PRICE FIXING OVER OVERSIGHT RR COMMIT Y AS THAT MANDATE WHEN
SOMETHING LIKE THIS HAPPENS?>>>>JORDAN BARRY: THERE ARE A LOT OF ANTI
TRUST LAWS THAT PREVENT PRICE FIXING BY PRIVATE ACTORS. THE HOTELS CAN’T GET TOGETHER AND
SAY WE’RE GOING TO CHARGE 300 DOLLARS A NIGHT AND MAKE A DEAL.
THAT’S A FEDERAL VIOLATION AS WELL AS A STATE ISSUE.
>>>>PEGGY: SO PERHAPS THERE’S SOME CHECKS AND BALANCES.
>>>>JORDAN BARRY: ABSOLUTELY.>>>>PEGGY: OKAY.
EARLIER ON MID DAY EDITION I JUST WANTED TO SAY WE TALKED WITH JOE TURZI, THE HEAD OF
SAN DIEGO’S CONVENTION AND VISITORS BUREAU, HE SAID: JORDAN, HE HAS A POINT.
COMPETITION IS A GOOD THING TYPICALLY FOR BUSINESS.
ARE THERE OTHER POSITIVES TO THIS ROOM TAX?>>>>JORDAN BARRY: WELL, UM, YOU KNOW, THE
QUESTION IS WHETHER YOU THINK THAT THE CITY OR THE HOTELS ARE GOING TO DO A BETTER JOB
OF PROMOTING TOURISM IN SAN DIEGO WITH THIS MONEY.
THERE’S A LITTLE LESS FLEXIBILITY, THEY CAN’T MOVE THE MONEY AWAY FROM TOURISM, MAYBE YOU
LIKE THAT IF YOU WANT TO MAKE SURE TOURISM IS SUPPORTED F.YOU THINK THE HOTELS ARE BETTER
AT THIS, THIS IS PROBABLY A GOOD THING.>>>>PEGGY: LET’S TALK ABOUT PROP 26.
BASICALLY, IT SAYS THAT YOUÊ IT HAS TO BE VOTED ON BECAUSE IT’S A TAX.
THE HOTELIERS SAYING IT’S NOT A TAX, BUT OPPONENTS SAY IT IS.
WHERE DOES IT FALL IN THAT AS FAR AS PROP 26?
>>>>JORDAN BARRY: NO ONE HAS EVER TACK AN CASE QUITE LIKE THIS TO COURT AND GOTTEN A
RULING. THAT’S ONE OF THE BIG OBSTACLES THAT MIGHT
STAND IN THE WAY OF CONVENTION FINANCING AGREEMENT IS IF THE COURT SAYS THIS IS A LEGAL ARRANGEMENT.
>>>>PEGGY: I THINK SAN DIEGO IS HAVING A JUDGE LOOK AT THIS CORRECT?
>>>>JORDAN BARRY: THEY’VE STARTED THE PROCESS TO GET THINGS MOVING, BUT IT HASN’T GONE TO
COURT YET.>>>>PEGGY: THANKS SO MUCH FOR YOUR INC.

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