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Hotel tax approved

JACKSON – Tourists or anyone utilizing a hotel, motel room or any room alike in Northampton County will have to pay a hotel occupancy tax.

At a recent Northampton County Board of Commissioners’ meeting, the commissioners unanimously approved a resolution for a hotel occupancy tax in the county.

The resolution is the final step in solidifying the occupancy tax which was authorized last year by the North Carolina General Assembly allowing the county to “levy a room occupancy tax of up to 6 percent of the gross receipts derived from the rental of any room, lodging, or accommodation furnished by a hotel, motel, inn, tourist camp or similar place within the county that is subject to sales tax imposed by the state.”

According to the General Assembly act, on a quarterly basis, the county must remit the net proceeds of the occupancy tax to the Northampton County Tourism Development Authority, which will use two-thirds of the funds to promote travel and tourism in the county with the remaining funds earmarked for tourism related expenditures.

A portion of the Northampton County Tourism Development Authority is made up of individuals who are affiliated with businesses that collect the tax and those that are currently active in the promotion of travel and tourism in the county.

In May, the occupancy tax was levied after a public hearing was held to take citizen comments on the matter.

It was estimated by County Manager Wayne Jenkins in a previous meeting, using 2004 occupancy room rates, the tax would generate approximately $23,000 to $25,000 annually.