SV option tax
revenues down again
Express Staff Writer
Option Tax revenues for the City of Sun Valley were down sharply in July
compared to last year, maintaining a trend of lower revenues from
tourist-related expenditures through most of 2002.
collected $201,053 from LOT receipts in July, down 16 percent from the
city’s receipts of $239,194 in July 2001.
Valley has collected a total of $880,332 through the first 10 months of
the fiscal year 2001-2002, including revenues from October 2001 through
July 2002. The total is down a sizable 12 percent from receipts of
$1,001,958 from October through July during the fiscal year 2000-2001.
Pincetich, Sun Valley city administrator, said the drop in city revenues
from LOTs, which levy a 3-percent tax on lodging, retail and liquor
sales in the city, was anticipated. Pincetich has set the city’s
projected LOT revenue for the entire 2001-2002 fiscal year at
$1,120,500, a number he expects the city will reach when all the
receipts are tallied.
said the decreases in LOT revenue this year can be attributed in large
part to the nation’s lagging economy and ongoing concerns among
travelers about terrorism and global political instability.
blame is a significant loss of LOT revenues from Elkhorn Resort and its
associated businesses. Pincetich said city LOT revenues from Elkhorn
have dropped significantly since the complex was sold to new owners who
stopped marketing their services and put forth a plan to tear down the
resort to build a village of townhouses and condominiums.
said the city historically brought in approximately $160,000—about
15-percent of the city total—from LOT taxes on Elkhorn businesses.
all going bye-bye," he said.
noted that the city has brought in some revenue from Elkhorn throughout
the year, as the hotel has maintained an occupancy rate of 20 to 50
percent, and golfers have continued to pay for use of the Elkhorn golf
course. The resort was officially closed on Sept. 30.
Waller, executive director of the Sun Valley-Ketchum Chamber of
Commerce, agreed that the phasing out of Elkhorn Resort has hurt LOT
revenues. "Elkhorn was not being aggressive in the marketplace, and
they weren’t soliciting business," she said. "That certainly
had an impact."
said he adjusted the city’s projected LOT revenue after hearing that
the CG-Elkhorn ownership group planned to close the resort.
that LOT revenues from businesses owned and operated by Sun Valley Co.
have remained somewhat constant over the last year, with numbers down
slightly overall. Sun Valley Co. sales account for the majority of the
city’s LOT revenue, usually accounting for most of the 85 percent of
receipts garnered by the city outside of Elkhorn.
for the 2002-2003 fiscal year has projected that LOT revenues will be
similar to those from the 2001-2002 fiscal year.
estimating the revenues will stay put, and we hope they get
better," he said.
said she has seen signs that tourist visits to Sun Valley and Ketchum
could improve this coming ski season. "People are definitely
calling earlier and looking further ahead than they have been," she
said. "We’re cautiously optimistic."