Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Government taxing tourists for local development = higher costs

Maybe some government officials just don't get how taxation impacts everybody. They get in office, and all of a sudden, they have the power of taxation and voila, somehow, they need more money to run government services rather than cut back on unnecessary services that private business does more cost effectively.

They have the power of the purse, spending your money, claiming it's all for you. Somehow, they then turn around and claim they've spurred economic development with your money. In actuality, higher taxation costs you more in the end.

Any time government taxes something, the cost of doing business increases. That cost is passed on to the consumer. The higher cost of one thing - such as a hotel room - impacts another and another economic activity.

Let businesses thrive by lower taxation. Watch how the economy grows.

In this instance, local government can impose a hotel tax - so gee, they'll find something they can spend the so-called extra tax revenue on to provide you with local government services.

Instead of just getting out of the way of local business and creative innovation, government has to intrude because then officials can claim they've helped spur economic development. Actually, what they'll do by imposing the hotel tax is increase cost of doing business in Fayette County.

That increase in cost of doing business has a wave effect, with the cost of business rising throughout the state.

What will commissioners do with the extra tax monies? Pay for things they shouldn't be involved in anyway, such as a running a Ferry Boat, helping maintain a Castle, and using your tax dollars to create business parks which still remain less than fully occupied. Some of the parks include areas also known as Keystone Opportunity Zones, property where local taxes are fully waived for a 10 to 13 year period to attract what, new companies and new employees.

Meanwhile, other businesses are taxed and must pay not only their own fair share, but also pay the tax burden for somebody located in a tax-free zone. Unbelievable.

Where have the former, current, and candidate commissioners been on justifying even one person's loss of a home or business in the county for failure to pay taxes while others don't have that threat because they're in a KOZ?

Former Chief Justice John Marshall said " The Power to tax involves the Power to destroy."

Watch Fayette decline in population even further. We're down to about 145,760 residents now, according to the article...

Fayette County officials finally will check out lucrative hotel tax
By Chris Foreman
Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Despite a change in state law six years ago, Fayette County remains one of only three counties -- and the last in Western Pennsylvania -- without a local hotel room tax that could create a tourism grant program for its popular sites and parks and save $20,000 in the county's annual general fund.
While a tourism professional estimates the maximum 3 percent fee might snatch as much as $650,000 a year from out-of-towners, much like neighboring Somerset County, discussion about a room levy hasn't been a burning topic during the four-year terms of Fayette County Commissioners Angela Zimmerlink, Joe Hardy and Vincent Vicites...



Scope and application of Chapter 38—Hotel Occupancy Tax—statement of policy.


Butler County

A copy of Ordinance 2001-1, Hotel Room Rental Tax (Revised), is also available for download here...


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