One of the more intriguing storylines ahead of Tuesday’s election in Columbia has been the debate around Proposition 1, a ballot issue that would raise the city’s hotel and motel lodging tax to 5 percent from 4 percent.
The proposition was put on the ballot by a May vote of the Columbia City Council, and revenues would help finance a new terminal at Columbia Regional Airport.
Proponents of Prop. 1 include Foundation for Columbia’s Future, a political action committee appointed by City Manager Mike Matthes to promote the ballot measure. The committee reported raising $63,749 as of Thursday, according to reports filed with the Missouri Ethics Commission.
The Columbia Hospitality Association has questioned the specificity of plans to build the new terminal, which would require federal grants in addition to revenues from the lodging tax. The association has also criticized the addition in 2012 of the phrase “economic development purposes” to the description of how the hotel and motel tax revenue would be used, which they criticize as being open-ended.
Read more: Columbia Missourian