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DOA?

An online story in today’s Sun Gazette says that Arlington County’s efforts to resurrect a 0.25 percent surtax on hotel bills “looks dead.” Here’s Scott McCaffrey’s report:

“County economic-development officials appear to have abandoned their effort to win back taxing authority to fund tourism promotion in Arlington.

“No bills have been introduced this legislative session to return to Arlington officials the ability to levy a 0.25-percent surtax on hotel stays, with the funds (about $1 million a year) supporting efforts at targeting both business and leisure travelers.

“Arlington had levied the tax for decades, but the General Assembly last year stripped the taxing authority away, after Republicans and some Democrats were infuriated by the County Board’s lawsuit against state and federal officials over high-occupancy-toll (HOT lanes) on I-395 and I-95.

“County Board members seemed disinterested in pursuing the matter in this year’s General Assembly session, and efforts by county staff to convince the hotel community to financially support a lobbying effort in support of the tax hit a dead end."

Looks like the poohbahs on the County Board will have to decide this year just how much they really need those tourism bureaucrats. Or will the Arlington County Board finally admit they were just throwing away all those millions of dollars for all those years?

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