HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Forty million dollars: that’s about the bill city leaders are expecting to pay for a new amphitheater in Midcity.
And at the last city council meeting, president Devyn Keith suggested increasing the lodging tax to help pay for it.
Devyn Keith says the council will debate the proposal and vote on it at Thursday night’s meeting. At the last meeting on February 27, several people from the hospitality industry spoke out against it.
Keith is suggesting a one percent increase for the lodging tax. This means hotels and other properties will have to pay more for renting their rooms.
Under the new proposal being debated tonight, that money will be split on several projects, including that amphitheater. It’ll also go towards tourism promotion, maintaining the visitor’s bureau and capital projects like repairs and upgrades to the VBC.
We talked with the CEO and president of the Huntsville Madison County Convention and Visitors Bureau Judy Ryals tells me she’s worried the increase will keep conventions from coming to the rocket city.
“We're really growing from a city standpoint. Additional hotels, more attractions, more events that are going on. And we want people to feel really welcome in coming here, and if their lodging tax is too high they might reconsider and choose another city,” Ryals said.
Again the city council is expecting to vote on this Thursday night.