Bertie approves occupancy tax

Published 5:45 pm Friday, April 12, 2024

Getting your Trinity Audio player ready...

WINDSOR – Bertie County officials realize how travel and tourism can be used to spark economic development by focusing on the county’s best assets: nature, history and culture.

To fund the marketing and promotion aspect of that development, the county’s Board of Commissioners has approved a six percent occupancy tax and will establish a Tourism Development Authority (TDA) to provide administration of the tax proceeds.

At Monday night’s meeting of the board, a motion was adopted to levy a room occupancy tax of six percent under the authority conferred by North Carolina Session Law, which applies to the gross receipts derived from the rental of any room, lodging, or accommodation furnished by a hotel, motel, tourist camp, or similar place that is subject to sales tax imposed by the State of North Carolina. This tax will be effective on the first day of the second calendar month after the date the tax is adopted, which would be June 1. A resolution with the TDA guidelines will be submitted for approval on June 3.

The motion was approved without objection following a required public hearing on the matter. No one spoke for or against the measure.

“We are one of a very few counties in the state that does not have an occupancy tax,” said board chair John Trent.

Last year, the North Carolina General Assembly cleared the way for Bertie County officials to levy an occupancy tax by granting them that authority.

Among the approved uses of the new tax are destination promotion, tourism-related expenditures, which includes uses varying from festivals and events, to capital projects,

funding or debt support for tourism-related capital projects such as convention centers and arenas or visitor attractions, and beach renourishment.

Bertie becomes the third county in the Roanoke-Chowan area to levy an occupancy tax. In 2021-22 (the latest year in which the tax numbers are available), Northampton County (a 6% tax) generated $156,500 in occupancy tax while Hertford County / Town of Ahoskie (a combined 6%) gained $57,000 each.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

email author More by Cal