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Economy / Business

Hillsborough County Sees Increased Bed Tax Revenue

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Quincy Walters
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WUSF News
Downtown Tampa Skyline

In November, Hillsborough County saw an increase in bed tax revenue--a five percent tax on hotel and resort stays. Nearly $2.5 million in bed taxes were collected last month. 

Santiago Corrada, the CEO of Visit Tampa Bay, said that it's part of a trend for the past couple of years--locally and nationally. 

"The economy is much better," he said. "Whenever we see more disposable income, we obviously see people taking vacations and enjoying themselves and spending more." 

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Credit Visit Tampa Bay
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Visit Tampa Bay

Another reason, he said, is the city of Tampa has been doing a good job of marketing itself abroad. 

"Recently, a report was issued that our city brand is starting to resonate around the world," he said. "

Corrada said increased bed tax revenue leads to more revenue from sales and property taxes.

"When [tourists] are staying in our hotels, they're out in our restaurants and shopping and buying and going to our attractions," he said, which is why Floridians don't have to pay for income tax.

The past fiscal year, Hillsborough collected about $29.6 million in bed taxes. And with the Outback Bowl and College Football Championships being held in Tampa in January, Corrada expects this fiscal year to be better.