BLUE RIDGE, Ga – Commissioners approved an addendum concerning lodging (hotel/motel) tax split between the Chamber of Commerce and Fannin County for tourism product development.
Previously, the split was 50/50 between the two entities and now the county will receive another eighth and third of the tax. The funds could go toward needs at the parks, recreation center, and other designation tourism items.
“The county shall pay the Chamber as under the original agreement and any renewal of the same, 41.66 percent of the total tax collected. The same shall be and is restricted to tourism markets. All other provisions of the original agreement shall remain in full force and in effect,” read the addended agreement.
When the lodging tax was initially established, some counties contracted with a 501(c) organization, such as the Chamber of Commerce. The agreement is considered a public/private partnership for this reason.
“It’s something we can give back to our community as long as it’s a tourism-related product,” Chairman Jamie Hensley added.
In 2019, the board of commissioners voted to send the hotel/motel increase proposal to the General Assembly. It’s a one percent increase from the current five percent tax rate. The General Assembly passed an up to eight percent increase, but the commissioners only approved going up to six percent.
The tax use is restricted to tourism product development under the county and tourism marketing under the Chamber.
Fiscal Year 2020 Adjustments
Commissioners passed 2020 budget adjustments after auditors discovered the expenditures were slightly over for the year.
2020 financial statements were passed as well. The formality is to keep the books in line with state protocol.
The 2020 audit presentation will hopefully take place in October.
Whitepath Building for Sale
The Whitepath building has been listed for sale with the help of Economic Development Director Christie Gribble. It’s not an MLS real estate listing but is posted for sale on the economic development website.
A previous board purchased the building in 2019. In 2021 an inspection unveiled mold and some asbestos in the building.