I am not sure what world Keith Sketchley lives in but his rant about the evil of the hotel room tax shows a distinct lack of understanding about the room tax. The room tax is implemented on the accommodation businesses with four or more rooms, and with 51 per cent of the businesses with 51 per cent of the rooms agreeing, so the participating regions in the program can have significant budgets to promote their area. It should be noted that the vast majority of municipalities in B.C., including Vancouver Island, consider tourism to be a major driver for their economy and have already voluntarily participated in this program.
The monies taken in by the room tax, paid for by the guests of the accommodations units with four or more rooms, is strictly regulated to be used for tourism promotion and marketing of the municipality or regional area that the accommodation units operate in. And of course all businesses in that area benefit from any increase in tourism.
Sooke and Region is falling behind every year because we don’t have the marketing budget to keep up with the marketing done by the rest of the municipalities and it is about time we start promoting the benefits of our region to the traveling world.