UTICA–Oneida County officials are making the move to raise the occupancy tax, otherwise known as the “bed tax,” from 2 percent to 5 percent. This tax would apply to those who stay at local hotels and motels.
County Executive Anthony Picente wants a chunk of the additional revenue to help pay for the proposed Nexus Center sports complex in downtown Utica.
Initial estimates to make the Nexus Center happen come in at $44 million. New York State has committed up to $22 million–or 50 percent–of the project cost.
Picente says the current “bed tax” brings in around $750,000 each year–meaning the 5 percent tax would garner $1.875 million annually; how much of that will go to the Nexus Center has yet to be decided.
The next steps to make the 5 percent “bed tax” a reality rests in the hands of the State legislature–the legislative session ends June 19th.
Eyewitness News reporter Ben Dennis brings us more.