Hello TAP Supporters!
Recently the City of Austin changed the rules on how the hotel/motel tax money can be used.
The following is a link to the online form for emailing the mayor and council simultaneously:
It has recently come to light that the Council is considering applying a narrow interpretation of the State Attorney General’s ruling concerning the use of state Hotel Occupancy Tax (HOT) funds. Under the current interpretation that has been in place for years in Austin, HOT funds have been used to support a wide variety of creative, community-based arts organizations. These groups increase the city’s livability, complement its artistic temperament, and boost tourism by putting Austin on the map as a city with a vibrant and exciting arts culture.
All that will change if the city adopts a narrow view of the AG ruling, which states that only projects proving a direct, quantifiable impact on tourism are eligible to receive HOT funds. But there are many ways to interpret and evaluate an arts group’s impact on tourism. As City Council members, you have the discretion to continue interpreting the existing statute in such a way as to not wipe out over a hundred arts organizations that are currently enriching the lives of Austin’s citizens—particularly the largely under-served populations of children, the elderly, lower-income, and people of color. Even the city’s own Special Opportunities and Capacity Building programs will be ineligible for funding under this narrow interpretation.