Updated on Jan. 5, 2022 — Watch: Election to decide visitor tax to support local sports facilities
The Guthrie City Council will hold a workshop meeting Tuesday evening to see if they support an election for a hotel tax increase that would allow improvements for local youth sports.
The discussion will take place inside City Hall at 6 p.m. and will be followed by the city council meeting at 7 p.m. The meetings can be viewed on the Guthrie News Page Facebook and YouTube channels.
City Manager Leroy Alsup is expected to give a presentation on the proposal. Afterwards, the council could decide if they want to hold an election to allow qualified voters within the city to vote and make the final decision.
Only persons staying in a hotel or bed and breakfast within Guthrie pay the hotel (lodging) tax. Persons staying in Perry, Enid, and Ponca City to the north are all paying 8% hotel tax, according to City of Stillwater officials.
If approved by the Guthrie council and voters, the additional dollars would be set aside and used exclusively for the purpose of improvements and/or major maintenance of sports fields now belonging to, or hereafter acquired by, the city.
Last March, the City was awarded a competitive Land and Water Conservation Fund grant from the Oklahoma Department of Tourism for a $1 million to begin a youth sports complex at the current Owens Field Softball Complex. The Guthrie city council allocated an additional $1 million toward the complex. Related article: Guthrie lands grant to begin a new sports complex
Currently, visitors pay a 13% tax when they visit a hotel or bed and breakfast inside the city limits. The breakdown, includes a 4% hotel tax and a 9% (4.5% state, 3.75% City of Guthrie and .75% Logan County) sales tax.
The current 4% Guthrie hotel tax is split between tourism (63.33%), parks (31.67%) and administration (5%).
The state allows a maximum of an 8% hotel tax rate.
In February, Stillwater voters will decide if their hotel tax will go from a 4% hotel tax to 7%. The City of Edmond pushed back their consideration of their 4% hotel tax rate after citizens approved a .25 sales tax increase to purchase 22 acres of land abutting E.C. Hafer Park.