R.I.’s 5% hotel tax collection up in August

COLLECTION OF THE 5 percent hotel tax in Rhode Island increased 8.5 percent year over year in August. The Omni Providence Hotel, pictured above, accounted for $135,027 of total collection. / PBN FILE PHOTO/STEPHANIE ALVAREZ EWENS
COLLECTION OF THE 5 percent hotel tax in Rhode Island increased 8.5 percent year over year in August. The Omni Providence Hotel, pictured above, accounted for $135,027 of the total collection. / PBN FILE PHOTO/STEPHANIE ALVAREZ EWENS

PROVIDENCE – The 5 percent hotel tax collection in Rhode Island in August increased 8.5 percent year over year to $3.2 million, an increase of $248,659, according to the R.I. Department of Revenue Tuesday.

Regional tourism district allocation (which does not include the allocation to the Providence Warwick Convention and Visitors Bureau) decreased 3.9 percent year over year to $1.2 million. It is worth noting that the allocation percentage for tourism districts was reduced year over year from 47 percent to 42 percent. The PWCVB saw a 6.2 percent decline in revenue from the 5 percent hotel tax to $300,711 for the month.

The largest tourism district allocation was to Aquidneck Island, which received $558,045, a 1.2 percent decline year over year.

The regional tourism district with the largest nominal increase year over year was Northern Rhode Island, where the allocation increased $14,161 to $38,677.

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Newport was the municipality with the largest allocation from the 5 percent hotel tax in August with $228,202. Newport also had the largest nominal increase year over year, increasing $17,903 (or 8.5 percent). Middletown experienced a 19.9 percent year-over-year increase to $98,407 for August, while Providence saw a 14 percent increase to $114,953 (the second-highest 5 percent hotel tax collection of any municipality in the state).

New Shoreham experienced the largest nominal decrease, with the allocation declining $12,718 year over year to $49,804. All told, municipalities received $760,107 from hotel activity in August, a 7.3 percent year-over-year increase.

Money allocated to the R.I. Commerce Corp. increased 40.8 percent to $916,740 in August.

Fiscal 2018 to date, 5 percent hotel tax collection has increased 6.8 percent year over year to $6.2 million, a difference of $396,769. The four major recipient groupings of the tax have received the following allocations through August:

  • Regional tourism districts – $2.3 million, decline of 5.6 percent
  • Municipalities – $1.5 million, increase of 5.9 percent
  • R.I. Commerce Corp. – $1.8 million, increase of 38.7 percent
  • Providence Warwick Convention and Visitors Bureau – $589,720, decline of 7.9 percent

In August, room re-sellers and hosting platforms – such as Airbnb – accounted for $70,978 in 5 percent hotel tax collection, compared with the $1,848 in August 2016.

The Omni Providence Hotel collected $135,027 of the 5 percent hotel tax in August, a 44.7 percent increase year over year. For fiscal 2018, the Omni has collected $252,078, a 32.4 percent increase compared with fiscal 2017 through August.

Chris Bergenheim is the PBN web editor.