SCOTTSBORO, Ala. - Scottsboro city leaders want to cash out on their tourism, so they have raised the lodging tax from 13% to 15%. "One percent goes to the city and the other percent goes to a fund, which funds tourism specific events," explained JP Parsons, the director of tourism.
Individuals can receive money from the city to produce events that reap big numbers of tourists. "This is something we've never had before, never had the opportunity to have a grant system that helps fund tourist specific events," says Parsons.
The Jackson County Tourism Department says they're excited about the future of this program. "Every year we get dozens of request to have fishing tournaments here and we've had to turn them down because we haven't had the funding."
The tourism department has hosted fishing tournaments previously that had economic impacts reaching almost 3 million dollars. "Just staying one night, they spend money on hotels and the rooms and have monies that go into sales tax," explains Parsons.
Putting more money into the community without actually taking from the community. "Therefore the people of Jackson County don't have to pay that additional taxes. These taxes are paid by the visitor." Parsons says many are excited about the future events and benefits to come, all thanks to the city's new fund.