The results are encouraging as we head into the spring and summer months when monthly transient occupancy tax (TOT) collections are much higher.
Several factors contributed to March’s strong growth. First, March 2012 built on a relatively flat month last year, when TOT grew only 0.2%. Also, there were two more weekend days in March 2012 than in the previous March, according to how the calendar dates fell. The number of weekend days in a given month directly affects revenues and growth rates, since occupancy is higher on weekends due to the large number of weekend visitors to our city. March is also when we see an increase in visits due to Spring Break travel. With pleasant Spring weather throughout the month, occupancy for hotels and vacation rentals was higher than last March by 5.4% on average.
Year-to-date, TOT has grown 10.1% over the prior year, with $9.95 million collected during the first 9 months of the fiscal year. The year-end estimate for TOT is $13.5 million, nearly $500,000 above the current amended budget.
Below is a link to the Transient Occupancy Tax table showing the March results: