Tourism group discusses room tax

  • Apr. 28, 2008 11:00 a.m.

Submitted article–The third meeting of Tourism BC’s Community Tourism Foundations Program was held Thursday (April 24) in Port. The meeting was well attended by municipal and band council leaders, stakeholders and representatives from the Northern BC Tourism Association and Tourism BC. The Community Tourism Foundations Program is assisting to develop and support an Islands destination marketing organization (DMO).The group discussed governance models and options for funding as well as a strategy to develop dialogue with the recently formed Economic Development groups that have been created as part of the Islands Strategic Land Use Plan.One suggestion for funding was the implementation of an accommodation hotel room tax (AHRT) which has been very successful in other communities in the Province. Several participants said more information was needed to answer questions raised by accommodation providers because their initial conversations had not been overly positive about this tax, which needs the support of the accommodation providers to be approved.Many benefits of the tax were presented to the group based on examples from elsewhere in the Province although the group decided that more information was needed about the governance model and composition of the Islands destination marketing organization before the issue is officially brought for consideration. The group will meet again in June. In the meantime, it hopes to approach the two recently formed economic development groups on Islands, the Misty Isles Economic Development Society comprised of the non-Haida communities and the Haida Economic Development Corporation made up of the CHN, Band Councils and Hereditary Chiefs to discuss ways the groups can use the information gained through the Community Tourism Foundations Process to create an inclusive Islands DMO.