Beaverton adds 4% hotel tax to build arts center

The tax is earmarked for a new performing arts center

(CNN)
(CNN)

BEAVERTON, Ore. (KOIN) — The Beaverton City Council approved a new lodging tax Tuesday night, which is raising concerns from hotel operators and even some members of the city council.

The council approved a 4% tax with a 4-1 vote in order to fund a bond to build and operate an arts center.

A rendering of a performing arts center that will be funded by a hotel tax.
A rendering of a performing arts center that will be funded by a hotel tax.

“We are trying to deliver on what people want,” says Council President Marc San Soucie. “This is a really happy harmony.”

But not everyone feels that way, including the lone no vote, Councilor Betty Bode.

“Well, right now business is going up, what’s going to happen when business is going down and it’s not there?”

But Mayor Denny Doyle says revenue projections were based on the worst performing economy in 50 years.

Hotel operators are also upset, one telling KOIN 6 News she is frustrated because there was no public vote. And Patrick Nofield of Escape Lodging Co. feels the new tax will make it hard to compete.

“Over a weeks time, it’s $50 more staying in Beaverton than Hillsboro.”

Doyle has a message for hotel owners who feel they can’t be competitive.

“I think time will tell,” he says. “We’ve done our homework, it’s a very small portion of a hotel bill.”

A rendering of a performing arts center that will be funded by a hotel tax.
A rendering of a performing arts center that will be funded by a hotel tax.

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