Senate gives nod to up hotel/motel tax in Calcasieu

BATON ROUGE — Legislation that would give Calcasieu Parish and each municipality in the parish authority to levy and collect an additional 1 percent hotel and motel occupancy tax received unanimous approval Wednesday in the state Senate. SB 542 by Sen. Ronnie Johns, R-Sulphur, moves to the House.

Proceeds of the tax would have to be used to promote and fund programs that enhance visitation, tourism and economic development and for infrastructure improvements.

The net proceeds of the tax after deduction of not more than 1 percent of collection expenses would be distributed by the Southwest Convention & Visitors Bureau to the governing authorities of the parish and municipalities within the parish where the hotel or motel is located.

The Southwest Convention & Visitors Bureau and the governing authorities have to enter into a cooperative endeavor agreement.

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