Atascadero levies new bed tax

April 11, 2013

CarltonAtascadero city officials are hoping for a boost in tourism after approving a new tax assessment on hotel patrons, with accruing funds earmarked specifically for marketing and promotion. (The Tribune)

The two-percent tariff will become part of hotel bills starting in June, and will be in addition to a 10 percent tax already charged to overnight visitors. Those revenues go into the city’s general fund.

Plans for the new tax were developed by a group of local hoteliers, who want to maintain some control over marketing and development planning and expenditures. Among designs discussed is a shuttle service to bring in tourists from neighboring destination locations.

Atascadero becomes the fifth city in the county to levy this tax, along with San Luis Obispo, Paso Robles, Pismo Beach and Morro Bay.

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There is no tourism in Atascadero, no matter how much they tax for it.

When Atascadero wants to talk serious tourism, it needs to begin with the Lake. Have you see how gross the water at the Atascadero Lake is now? I shudder just in recollection. I learned to swim in that lake. I spent every day of every summer of my youth at the Atascadero Lake Park. I had the best childhood there. It is really a shame the City has turned a blinds eye to those waters. Until they take drastic measures and clean up the Lake itself, tourism will always and only be those who stop into town for gas and a quick bite to eat…maybe a movie.

There’s a bed tax in Cambria and San Simeon. Paid for a nifty new website – woohoo. And events like the wine/art weekend – big whoop. Meantime, half our over-priced gift shops are boarded up & tourism is still declining. Nothing to see here, move along.

Kind of reminds me of the (probably federal) grant money that goes to pay for the “free” summer trolley that’s meant for the tourists, only they just wave at it as it goes by… so cute! Because, hey, THEY DROVE HERE IN A CAR, thank you very much, and don’t need to ride a transport that only runs approx. once an hour to about 5 places during severely limited hours. Can the trolley take these folks to breakfast? No, because it doesn’t start running until 10 a.m. Can it take them back to their motel room at around 4, or 5 p.m. when they’re through window shopping? No, because it stopped running at about 3 p.m. (or earlier, if the driver got bored with driving around all day with no passengers). Can it take them to and from dinner at that froo-froo she-she restaurant that the tour guide recommended and/or take them to and from window shopping on Burton at drive at night when the shops look so pretty with all the lights? No, again, because the trolley only runs from 10a-3p. Serious money has been spent to “get tourists out of their cars and into public transport” and it’s been an abysmal, short-sighted failure. But we continue to levy taxes in a down economy (when, historically, only reducing taxes works) and throw it haphazardly around like it’s going to fix everything wrong with the world.

Insanity is doing the same stoopid things over and over and expecting different results.

So I’m a tourist coming into town. Hmm where do I stay. Well the local BLVD. would make sense. Well they have this place called the Carlton. Wow my view out the window of the main drag is a used car lot to the north west and an old gas station across the street. Little further up to the south is a boarded up old Jack in the Box and past that concrete slabs of a burnt out thrift store.

I could stay at the Old Golf Tee. Not a bad place, little old fashion. It has a nice few of a New Movie theater surrounded by chain link fence and a bunch of dirt.

Of course I could stay up at the Holiday Inn. Of course it is set way off from the city center and has a nice few of the freeway.

Decisions, decisions.

Seems like the 10% tax all ready levied would have been 5 times better than this 2% tax. That 10& should have filled up the motels. 2% more is not enough if the larger tax didn’t help the local hoteliers are going to be in deep poop. Like the lake and zoo aren’t enough to bring in tourists nothing will help.

Maybe we should bring in a huge water slide that is adjacent to our wonderful lake. Then we could charge for showers to clean off all that crap on the kids getting dumped in the water there. Talk about a mud hole!

What a great draw!! We could have a tv commercial raving about how great it is for families to visit the water slide in Atrashcadero! We would even be more famous than we are now.


A bed tax…really? In what universe does raising the bed tax by 2% increase the number of tourists coming to Atrashcadero. No matter how you spell it, it’s still a “mud-hole.”…!

Bad press is press and what attracts people. Using the Pay to Play business model is very popular because it is funded by the user, likely not the local voter.

Ought to net somewhere in the neighborhood of $4.52 annually.

Does anybody think another tax will help Atascadero get more tourist. Something to do while your there might help.

Am I missing something? Increase bed tax by 2% and tourists will flock to Atascadero for vacation? Most people know where they are going on vacation without looking in the yellow pages or watching a commercial on TV. And the money goes into the general fund. It doesn’t take rocket science to see how that 2% will be used.