Breckenridge voters throw support behind lodging tax increase
SUMMIT DAILY NEWS
A resounding majority of Breckenridge voters approved ballot measure 2D, a 1 percent lodging tax increase, which passed with 71 percent of the vote.
Revenue generated from the tax increase will support town marketing efforts to draw destination tourism into Breckenridge.
“In Breckenridge we said, we’re going to make an investment in our community,” Town Councilman Mike Dudick said Tuesday. “There’re all these people that got behind this. I couldn’t be prouder of my town than I am tonight.”
The measure is expected to bring in $740,000 in new marketing funding, taking the town’s marketing budget from $1.68 million to $2.2 million. Supporters say these funds will help the town stay competitive with other ski resorts and create a sustainable source of marketing dollars going forward.
The Breckenridge Town Council has committed to allocating an another .5 percent of the lodging tax for the next five years.
The town currently earmarks .4 percent of the 2.4 percent lodging tax for marketing efforts. The 1 percent secured by 2D and the extra half percent the town agreed to add to the marketing budget will increase that to 1.9 percent on a 3.4 percent lodging tax.
Breckenridge’s marketing budget will be managed by a newly formed marketing advisory committee.
“The thing now is to really work on the marketing advisory committee and get some direction on what do we do with that money,” said Bruce Horii, a member of the marketing advisory committee. “It’s going to be best spent and invested back into the sales and marketing arena. It’s only putting us on a level that is equal or even still slightly below a lot of our main competition.”
Breckenridge has been among the most popular ski resorts in the country for several years running, due in part to marketing dollars allocated on a yearly basis by the town council. But drops in real estate sales have hit the town marketing budget hard. The lodging tax increase will provide a new and lasting source of marketing funding to help Breckenridge stay competitive with neighboring resorts like Vail and Aspen/Snowmass.
The measure’s backers say the funds will likely be used to drive tourism to Breckenridge during on-season lulls, like those in early February and late August.
“We got great money and great commitment from the tax payers to get more destination visitors to Breckenridge,” said Dudick, who also sits on the marketing advisory committee. “I’m definitely going to put the money where my mouth is on this one.”
SDN reporter Caddie Nath can be reached at (970) 668-4628.
Support Local Journalism
Support Local Journalism
As a Summit Daily News reader, you make our work possible.
Now more than ever, your financial support is critical to help us keep our communities informed. Every contribution, no matter the size, will make a difference.
Your donation will be used exclusively to support quality, local journalism.