Roberts’ bill to fund workforce housing, development OK’d by Colorado House |

Roberts’ bill to fund workforce housing, development OK’d by Colorado House

Steamboat Pilot & Today
Colorado Rep. Dylan Roberts says a bill he’s sponsored will give Colorado mountain communities more control over their lodging tax revenues.
John F. Russell/Steamboat Pilot & Today

State Rep. Dylan Roberts is applauding the Colorado House for passing HB22-1117, a bipartisan effort to give local counties and marketing districts more control over their lodging tax revenue.

If approved, the bill would change state statute to allow counties and marketing districts to use lodging tax revenue to pay for important community needs related to tourism. The bill would allow for expenditures, with voter approval, on items such as housing, child care and infrastructure improvements if the project enhances the visitor and overall community experience.

“The lack of housing for employees in Colorado’s rural, mountain and resort communities has reached a crisis level and it is directly impacting the provision of basic services as well as the ability to adequately staff and operate businesses,” said Margaret Bowes, executive director of Colorado Association of Ski Towns.

The bill is co-sponsored by Roberts, D-Avon, and Republican Rep. Marc Catlin of Montrose. It passed the state House 46-18.

“This is a tool that mountain communities have long asked for — the ability to use the revenue brought in by tourists to support the workers and communities that serve those tourists — but have been prevented from doing so by state law,” Roberts said in a statement.

Lodging taxes are capped by state law at 2% and can currently only be used for marketing and tourism promotion, according to information provided by Dylan’s office.

However, as more and more visitors seek out mountain communities across the state, the workforce needed to serve them is struggling to find housing.

If signed into law, HB22-1117 would expand the usage of lodging tax revenue beyond destination marketing and promotion to include workforce needs and economic development. The bill now heads to the Colorado Senate, where it has bipartisan support from Sen. Kerry Donovan, D-Vail, and Sen. Don Coram, R-Montrose.

Per the bill, at least 10% of the revenue will remain dedicated to tourism marketing and promotion.

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