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Vernon  

Room tax big earner

The City of Vernon earned $616,621.27 between January and December last year from its two per cent tax on local hotel room rentals, the largest-ever total collected by the city.

“This is a 15.1 per cent increase over 2014 ($535,746.89) and is up 77.1 per cent since the first full year of collection in 2011 ($348,157),” said Kevin Poole, economic development and tourism officer, in a report to city council.

June and August stand out as the highest occupancy months, a graph showed.

Twenty-seven hotels in the Vernon area apply the two per cent tax to visitors. The money is then used to promote Vernon as a destination.

Overal, the tax “equates to $30.8 million being spent on accommodations in Vernon in 2015, compared to $17.4 million in 2011,” said Poole, adding that hotels and motels in the city have had the fastest growing room revenue in comparison to Kelowna, Kamloops and Penticton.

In BC, accommodators generated $2 billion in room revenue last year, up 15.1 per cent over 2014.

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