Cannon Beach: Tax tourists to attract tourist

By Oregon Tax News,

This week Canon Beach City Hall will be voting on a 1% lodging tax. This tax hike on tourists is designed to attract new tourists. The logic behind raising taxes on people as a way to attract them seems contradictory.

Here is an important question to ask. Why is there a tourism tax problem in Canon Beach? Oregon passed a tourist tax in 2003 (Hb 2267) and then expanded it in 2005 (Hb 2197). The 2005 expansion made headlines because it covered yurts and tents. If the tax is needed to help recover from the recession, then is the tax temporary? Consider the fact that since the passage of Measure 67 — every single business in Canon Beach already has a new tax. Now certain ones will be taxed more.

70% of the lodging tax must be used for tourism activities. Why not 100%? IS money being used for other pruposes not related to tourism or not needed altogether? This are the questions that need to be addressed at the tax hearing.

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Posted by at 03:15 | Posted in Measure 37 | 18 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Valerie Ryan

    1. It’s Cannon Beach, not Canon Beach
    2. 30% of the funds collected will remain with the City to be used at their discretion for infrastructure or wherever the need is greatest.
    3. To your main point: Cannon Beach has NEVER had a single penny dedicated to generating tourism on any kind of a city-wide basis. What the Chamber of Commerce, Cannon Beach Business Associates and individual business owners have done has, of necessity, been limited by funds available and targeted markets. There are seven non-profits interested in applying for the funds when the Ordinance passes; each of them has events or personnel needs that will be met for the first time. There will be a mid-term review and a final audit of the use of the funds to determine their efficacy.

    • Conservatively speaking

      I love Cannon Beach for numerous reasons. Suffice to say, taxing my pocket book in the ‘inane’ of tourism (s’more) does not top my list.

      Frankly, overnighters became passé whence this native Oregonian (non PERS) retiree was no longer able book an ocean front room at the Hallmark for less than a Ben Franklin ‘SEE’ note.

      Yes, we still manage an occasional day trip from PDX to dine at The Driftwood Inn restaurant or Doogers. Yum! Too, perhaps, allot $um limited time to scan for a Rare Discovery or two on Hemlock without experiencing any bitter aftertaste.

      That said, tho’, more favorable Chinook Winds have redirected my tack towards Lincoln City where sunsets can be $een for le$$ wampum and not feel involuntarily scalped by Indian givers.

      Tally ho, Val! >;~)=)

  • eagle eye

    Seems to me Cannon Beach should be perfectly capable of deciding this on its own.

  • Jack

    Maybe I should mention to my uncle “TO MOVE OUT OF CANNON BEACH”. Vallerie Ryan, you Democrats still don’t get it, you don’t tax to get out of Recessions.

  • Steve Plunk

    I agree Cannon Beach should be able to decide this on their own so how about the council putting this on the ballot? Uh oh. I’ll bet you if they do that the people would not support such a tax during a recession and probably not any other time either.

    I also believe that while the city of Cannon Beach can decide this on their own the rest of us can criticize the decision. We come here to discuss public policy so it’s appropriate that those of us who see this as a poor decision say so.

    There is a growing problem within Oregon cities of staffers driving new finance initiatives. Council members rely on staff for much of the business that comes before them in terms of ordinances and budgetary matters but it should avoid letting staff drive tax and income policy. Those should remain the responsibility of the citizens who ultimately pay those taxes. It is another example of my question, who is serving who?

    • eagle eye

      They don’t put it on the ballot, the citizens don’t like it? Have an initiative to put it on the ballot — happens all the time in Eugene — and/or elect new city councilors.

      How’s your union busting going there in Medford? Are you having any luck rolling back public worker pay?

      • Steve Plunk

        That’s the rub isn’t it. The people have to do the work to get it on the ballot rather than the city officials giving them the opportunity to vote.

        What union busting are you talking about? You and I both know the unions are too powerful to bust. What will bust them is the coming public sector financial meltdown. If the public would have had an idea of what their elected representatives were giving away to these unions we could have avoided the problems we face today.

        It needs to be realized the world’s financial problems are a result of irresponsible governments and the spending binges they embarked upon. The trust is no longer there and the public sector employees are finding themselves vilified more every day.

        • thinkingstraight

          Sorry, Steve, but you’ve got it backwards: this country’s economic problems have been caused primarily by CEOs and their genuflecting boards running rampant with their greedy, exploitative urges. Where Government failed was in NOT realizing that such impulses needed curbing; the Bushies of the world believe–because it pays them to and because they’re not deep thinkers to begin with–that a “hands-off” approach will have no harmful consequences. But look at the fallout: the financial meltdown; the Toyota recalls; the West Virginia mining disaster; the Gulf spill; and the years and years and years of health insurance companies increasing your and my monthly premiums but then denying coverage when we need it. How did all this come to pass? The way it always does: unless people’s worst impulses are controlled by an umpire, harm will be suffered by the general public. It’s the same old story of private gain at public cost–and it’s why we need effective, consistent, and honest regulation by Government.

          • David Anfinrud

            Sorry it is the Federal Government and the unelected government officials that brought on this recession. You can blame Bush all you want but it was the Subprime morgtages that started with Carter doubled down by Clinton. Bush also supported them within reason.
            Remember Congress has not removed SUBPRIME LOANS. They are still making those loans. We will have another Housing bubble that will make the last one look like a bad dream. Government that claims to care and prevent repeats of the problem. Support more and more of doing the same. It is the standard Government motto. The program will work if you give it more money. IF a government programs fails it should be defunded. Fannie and Freddie are back in teh Subprime loans. Now they are TOO BIG TO FAIL since they hold most of the Mortgages in this country. We the tax payers will owe Trillions of more dollars to pay for these SubPRime LOANS that DEMOCRATS IN THE HOUSE WILL NOT REGULATE. Go back the the same housing rules as was in place in the 70’s. We will get a recovery. As long as they allow SUBPRIME LOANS and GOVERNMENT DEMANDING A CERTAIN PERCENTAGE of all loans to be SUBPRIME LOANS. We will only making the housing market more unstable.

          • Steve Plunk

            I usually try to treat uninformed people with a measure of respect but this statements deserves no respect. It is not only false but inflammatory and libelous. It’s also dumb.

            The greediest entity we face is our own government. A government that not only takes the fruits of labors but borrows so that our children will have to pay for something they didn’t use or approve. No corporation in the world comes near that level of greed.

            What you call a “hands off approach” is actually the culmination of many years of the government regulatory regime. The previous administrations and congresses passed many laws to protect miners, the environment, and consumers but the fact is not all risk can be legislated away. I know liberal government lovers like to think any problem can be cured with a new law but it can’t.

            The truth is many of the fallout items you listed are being overblown and misrepresented. The Toyota sudden acceleration problem has yet to be traced back to anything other than driver error. Toyota is being a responsible company and spending millions to make sure their product is safe. Remember we had the same issue years ago with Audi? Driver error was deemed the cause after millions of dollars was spent. That mine disaster? Those mines are inspected on a regular basis by the government. If it was unsafe why didn’t the government shut it down? And to be honest, I’m tired of the anecdotes concerning insurance coverage and evil insurers. We have the best health care in the world but silly liberals just want it to be free for everyone while paid for by “the rich”. Nonsense, pure nonsense.

            The worst impulse is the one of liberals to want control over their fellow man. They do it through government. No thanks thinkingstraight, your view of the world is so far off I can’t even give you respect. Get educated on the issues and I doubt you’ll be back here spouting off leftist drivel that can’t withstand scrutiny.

        • eagle eye

          Then they should elect city officials more to their liking.

          You posted a while back about “busting” the unions, didn’t you?

          The reason the unions are so strong in Oregon is because the electorate basically is OK with it. OK enough that they won’t entrust their government to the Repbulicans. Until and unless that changes, the unions are in a strong position. Perhaps Dudley has a chance of becoming governor? But how strong are the steps he will take to curb public employee costs? What I’ve heard is mostly around the margins — “negotiating” modest reductions in medical benefits, and less modest reforms to PERS. But where is his negotiating strength? Is he proposing to ban strikes by public unions? Until then, there’s not much chance of “busting” them.

          The idea of a financial crisis leading to a “busting” of the public unions is kind of the mirror image of the leftist Democrats now in the power. To wit: don’t waste a crisis. It’s kind of the rightwing wet dream right now, because they don’t have much else in the way of ideas these days. But I don’t think it will work: it will backfire on them if they ever get power, just as it is blowing back on Obama and company right now.

          I don’t agree that the worldwide financial crisis is solely or even mainly due to governments. There is also a lot of blame that belongs to the financial sector itself. And the whole thing calls into question the idea of the “self-regulating” market. Self-regulating, my backside.

          I’d say there’s at least as much chance that the result of all this will be the “busting” of the capitalist financial system, and perhaps the entire market economy. Certainly, the last elections point in that direction. And I don’t hear too much sympathy for Goldman Sachs and company (except on right-wing radio). Ditto for BP.

          • Steve Plunk

            The tough part about electing good representatives is they lie. They misrepresent what they will do in order to get elected.

            The financial crisis within the public sector is something I neither look forward to or wish to take advantage of. Unlike Rahm I don’t see it as something I should not waste. It will be wasteful enough for all of us. The idea of future generations paying off these huge pension obligations while receiving few services will seem wasteful to them as well.

            You may be right when you say we have no ideas on how to fix this mess. The years of union influence and the culpability of politicians has created a real conundrum. Like you say, so far it’s just tinkering around the edges while the real problems continue.

            We may have had some problems in the world of high finance but that’s not an indictment of capitalism. Many will argue, including myself, that these failures and bailouts were a result of government regulation and it was the government who bailed them out. The local businesses and regional businesses still prove the value of capitalism every day. Of course we can always look at the other systems and see where they went. Even with our current trouble capitalism wins the day. We mat see billions of dollars going down the tubes of our capitalist empire but the government is costing us trillions of dollars. The magnitude of failure is immense.

            I can’t help but think the public sector has burned the bridge of trust with the public. Government salaries are now higher than the private sector before benefits. Even Willie Brown admitted they went too far. Pensions will drain needed resources while kids are crowded into classrooms and streets go without repair. When the public asks why and learns how much of their tax money is going to those who retired at 50 or 55 years old while they work to 67 I expect some real anger.

            Our government works based upon the consent of the people and the trust of the people. When the trust is gone the consent will soon be gone. If we look back we can clearly see it is the government who has breached the trust. I have no trust I’ll receive the social security benefits promised to me. I have no trust the government will adequate fund schools while paying those pensions. I have no trust the government will negotiate in good faith with it’s employees ever again. I have no trust the government is anything more than a self serving entity that will destroy what it needs to in order to survive.

            Goldman Sachs and BP don’t hurt me and many other citizens nearly as much as government does so my loyalties are more with them than my city, Salem, or Washington DC.

          • eagle eye

            You may have that much more trust in corporations than in government, but I’m pretty sure — quite convinced — that you’re an outlier on this.

            The choice between a market system and a government run system is not an all or nothing thing. Actually, both the communists and the extreme right (the radical libertarians) make the same claim, as has been pointed out here by myself and others. And this claim is wrong. In all functioning economic systems, it’s some combination of both.

            In the present crisis, I’m quite convinced that neither government nor business, especially the financial corporations, is going to come out looking very good. There seems to be a great deal of anger and disdain toward both right now, and I would say with good reason.

            I’m glad you’re “loyalties” are more with GS and BP than with your local city of residence and Salem. I’m sure your loyalty will be repaid by GS and BP. I don’t think many people would place their loyalties as you do.

            As for retiring at 55, I’ve said it more than once: if that’s what you want, sock a big chunk of your income away, and start it early. Do 20% or 25%, and you can be like the government workers.

  • Joe Shaddix

    Easy solution, don’t go to the dump. They can’t tax me if I don’t go.

  • Frank

    When one city gets away with new taxes, it emboldens other cities to try and get away with it. We don’t live in a vacuum.

  • Whatever

    If the tax is not 100% used for tourism promotion there is no point of having it in the first place.

  • Mark

    I love the beach and will pay almost any amount to enjoy it.
    Bring it on!
    I’ve got the dough.
    Means nothing to me.
    A drop in the bucket.
    I will pay to help these poor people of the coast.

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