OCTOBER 15, 2016


Proposed utility poles, venue tax discussion, beach nourishment, and introducing a new city manager were the highlights of the South Padre Island City Council Meeting held on Oct. 5.
Discussion to clarify and explain project options listed in the venue tax proposition was on the agenda. Mayor Patel stated that early voting starts on Oct. 24 and ends on Nov. 4.
He also stated that Hotel Occupancy Tax is currently at 14.5 percent. If approved, it will increase to 16.5 percent. “The funds will only be generated by overnight visitors and will be invested  solely on South Padre Island,” clarified the Mayor. “This election does not affect property tax, sales tax, or the general fund,” he added.
Kimberly Dollar of POWC stepped to the podium to address the venue tax issue. She explained there are two venue taxes on the ballot. One is on the City’s ballot, the other is for Cameron County. There is only 2.5 percent to be had before reaching the state’s maximum allotted tax, and both of these propositions are asking for two percent. “So what that means to you is they both cannot get it – there’s not enough money to go around,” Dollar said.
“Downstairs on the first floor of City Hall is where you can vote for the SPI venue tax. It’s the only place you can vote for the SPI venue tax. If you are upstairs or any other place, and you’re casting a ballot for the President of the United States in a national ballot, and you see the word venue tax on the ballot, that is for the county,” she said.

– Kevin Rich