Bayou Vista – Where Living on the Water is a way of Life. SHORT TERM RENTALS may be a distinct reality in our community. The Mayor and Council currently have a draft copy of a new short term rental ordinance that could have a major impact on our way of life.
Currently there are several short term rentals illegally operating within the City. Citizens, who live close to these rentals, have voiced many complaints and concerns during recent meetings.
We have all been so comfortable with our wonderful little community behind the oleanders, that we may not understand the cost, both economically and personally, of how the passing of this ordinance can affect our lives.
While we appreciate the money brought into Galveston’s economy from Spring Break, Mardi Gras, Slab weekend, Dickens, and the Lone Star Motorcycle Rally, do we want our community bombarded with these visitors staying short term in Bayou Vista?
Infrastructure is a hot topic in Bayou Vista regarding roads, the Police Department, and the MUD facility. Bayou Vista is planning to create a “hotel tax” where part of that money will go to the State and the remainder will be used in Bayou Vista.
The mayor and council members discussed the collection of hotel tax as a form of revenue for the City. The collection of these monies could result in additional administrative costs in employee time and possibly the addition of needed employees.
The State of Texas Comptroller is very specific with how a city can use hotel taxes. Per the TML’s site (Texas Municipal League) www.tml.org, it appears that the city does not meet either criteria:
Criteria #1: First, every expenditure must DIRECTLY enhance and promote tourism AND the convention and hotel industry.
Criteria #2: Every expenditure of the hotel occupancy tax must clearly fit into one of nine statutorily provided categories for expenditure of local hotel occupancy tax revenues.
The City promised, in a recent council meeting, that they would host a town hall event where citizens can ask questions and they will answer. Contact the Mayor to ask when this meeting is scheduled.
The next City council meeting will be Tuesday, October 26, please plan to attend this meeting to voice your concerns to the Mayor and Alderman. If you are not available to attend, please email them at email@example.com and firstname.lastname@example.org.