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Thursday, Jan. 19, 2017 12:05 am

HOTELS PUSH TO STOP TAX PROPOSAL

Springfield hotels from are teaming up to oppose a tax increase. The Springfield Hotel Lodging Association (SHLA) announced it is imploring Mayor James Langfelder and the city council not to pass a proposal that would raise lodging and hotel taxes from six percent to seven percent. The money generated would be used to operate Oak Ridge cemetery.

Darin Dame, president of the SHLA, expressed his concern. “The mayor is the ultimate leader of the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau as his office oversees their direct efforts,” said Dame. “Over the last year, we have communicated several times that any tax increase needs to be earmarked for something that will deliver a true return on investment.”

According to the mayor, the taxes are projected to bring in $500,000 towards those operational efforts. “The Illinois Historic Preservation Agency has a full-time team managing Lincoln’s tomb, which is the tourist attraction,” said Dame. “We support aldermen and residents who are asking to review the overspending at the cemetery first. Why have no efforts been made to cut the operational costs, before robbing Peter to pay Paul in tax increases?”

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