TDC discusses addition to bed tax

Published: Thursday, July 11, 2013 at 10:11 AM.

Pickett said citizens and visitors did not want to be “user-feed to death” and he opposed the county asking another entity, the TDC, to provide services the county should be funding.

The suggestion was also made that while the county had ordinances on the books for issues such as beach driving and maintaining a pet on a leash, the fines should be more substantial.

Pat Hardman, president of the Coastal Community Association, said the county advertises pristine beaches which are not currently so pristine after a busy holiday weekend. She also noted that tourists create most of the problems and should foot the bill.

“Our visitors are leaving a mess,” Hardman said. “Why should my (property taxes) go for that? I think it is totally justified to put on the backs not of our property owners but on the backs of tourists.”

She said it was not logical that one additional penny in bed taxes would lead to fewer visitors.

Pickett agreed that he would like to ultimately see “leave no trace” as county policy, but was against the TDC subsidizing a portion of the county’s budget by adding to the bed tax.

He said he supported a short-term solution – a fee for guests during the summer aimed at bringing about leave not trace, for example, but not funding year round – and wondered if the TDC didn’t have the revenue or savings to address the problem in the short-term.



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