This week the Placer County Board of Supervisors voted to finalize the creation of the North Lake Tahoe Tourism Business Improvement District – freeing up over $4 million in transient occupancy tax for transportation and workforce housing projects while also generating an additional $6 million in assessment revenue for North Lake Tahoe annually.
With the creation of a new tourism business improvement district or TBID, a 1-2% assessment will be placed on lodging, retail, restaurant and recreation businesses in North Lake Tahoe to raise approximately $6 million for visitor services, business support and advocacy, economic development, tourism mitigation and transportation services. This independent funding will free up otherwise allocated transient occupancy tax revenues by covering these projects and services
“The TBID not only creates an avenue for all businesses to participate in local improvement projects but allows for a broader range of investments back into our community,” said District 5 Supervisor Cindy Gustafson. “From addressing traffic, to workforce housing, to the most pressing issues affecting our community, I am confident we will look back at this decision as the start of a more economically viable, collaborative and improved North Tahoe.”
The projects to be funded with the initial freed up TOT revenue include an on-demand microtransit service in the Placer County portion of the Tahoe Basin, expanded TART park-and-ride service, pedestrian crossing guards, enhanced trash service and increased snow removal service at trail heads. These projects have all been identified as critical initiatives to address traffic, trash mitigation, messaging needs and recreation access, which are all priorities under the region’s Tourism Master Plan.
The TBID, recently passed by the North Lake Tahoe business community, creates a tourism business assessment to bolster a year-round economy, offset tourism impacts and enhance vitality among local businesses. Tourism-driven businesses within the TBID would be assessed based on annual revenues, at different rates according to the business type and size. The revenue will support local infrastructure projects and, combined with freed up transient occupancy tax dollars, is expected to increase investment in workforce housing and traffic mitigation initiatives.
The Placer County Board of Supervisors voted to start the TBID formation process within the business community in December 2020, led by the North Lake Tahoe Resort Association. NLTRA held multiple public hearings that led up to the final vote among the business community last week. The current TBID will sunset after five years, with the board voting at that time whether to reestablish the district.
The board also approved the allocation of over $1 million in transient occupancy tax to the specified transportation and tourism mitigating projects after action was taken to form the TBID.
Newly funded projects will start as soon as June 2021 and will run through the end of the year.