Tourism Taxes Proposed in Nashville to Build Convention Center

Backers of the proposed $455 million downtown convention center in Nashville, Tenn., and Gaylord Entertainment are nearing an agreement to cooperatively back state legislation that would enable construction of the new center and also allow Gaylord and other private firms to use local tourism taxes to help fund their own convention center-tourism projects, The City Paper (Nashville, Tenn.).

The plan would let Metro (the Metropolitan Government of Nashville & Davidson County) increase the existing hotel-motel tax by one percent; charge a new $2 convention center fee (per room, per night) on all county hotels and motels; charge every bus, taxi and shuttle that leaves the airport a $2 fee; and establish a 1-percent rental car tax. The measures are designed to exempt locals from paying new taxes, according to The City Paper.

The Music City Center (MCC) Coalition—the organization pushing for the new city-owned center—has estimated the new taxes will cull at least $37.6 million annually, based on 2006 tourism levels.

A representative from Gaylord Entertainment has said that success of these projects will depend upon the support of local and state political leaders.

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