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Texas Action opposes this bill. SB 1365 violates our principles of limited government, individual liberty, and free markets because the hotel occupancy tax distorts the free market by favoring certain businesses over others, raises prices on consumers, and encourages government spending. Even though the purpose of this tax is to promote economic development, allowing another municipality to use this tax revenue for tourism projects will simply foster more of these unintended consequences.
The role of a limited government is not to grow tourism or to subsidize certain facilities, at the expense of others, with taxpayer money. Like any city whose concern is to see more tourists come and visit, a better solution would be the repeal of the municipal hotel occupancy tax, which would encourage individuals to stay longer in hotels and to spend more of their money -- that would have otherwise been paid in taxes -- within the local economy, and in tourism events and activities. Such a situation would benefit tourists, municipalities and their communities and would also favor a limited government and the free market system.
For these reasons, we oppose SB 1365.