State law requires that cities with a Lodging Tax Fund establish an advisory committee. Olympia's Lodging Tax Advisory Committee establishes an annual service proposal process and reviews the information to make recommendations to the City Council when they are considering budget proposals for the following year.
About Olympia's Lodging Tax
The Lodging Tax is an excise (sales) tax authorized by State law in RCW 67.28, Public Stadium, Convention, Arts and Tourism Facilities. It is paid by people who stay overnight in a lodging establishment such as a hotel, motel, bed and breakfast facility, or camp ground.
The Lodging Tax Advisory Committee usually meets twice a year - in July/August and in early October.
Get additional meeting details, agendas, and minutes on our online meeting calendar.
Membership Criteria & Appointment Information
- Nathan Allan, Swantown Inn Bed & Breakfast* - term ends 2019
- Russ Carstensen, South Sound Maritime Heritage Association** - term ends 2018
- Jack Kiley, Puget Sound/State Senior Games** - term ends 2018
- Greg Taylor, DoubleTree by Hilton/Aim Hospitality* - term ends 2019
- By State law, Olympia's Lodging Tax Advisory Committee must have at least five (5) members consisting of:
- Two members to represent businesses required to collect the tax*,
- Two members to represent activities authorized to be funded by the tax**,
- One member from the Olympia City Council who serves as the Chair of the Committee.
- A majority of the members must reside in the City of Olympia or Olympia's Urban Growth Area or represent agencies located in Olympia.
- Other than the Councilmember, terms expire in a staggered sequence with no more than two terms expiring in a given year.
- Term: 3 years, ends March 31
- Appointed by: Olympia City Council
Lodging Tax Funding
Non‐profit and government agencies that provided tourism services or operate tourism facilities are eligible to apply for funding from Olympia's Lodging Tax. By state law, the Lodging Tax must be used for:
- Marketing and operating expenses of festivals and events designed to attract tourists
- Capital and/or operating costs of tourism‐related facilities owned by the City
- Operating expenses of tourism‐related facilities operated by 501c3 and 501c6 non‐profit organizations.
Applications for the next year's funding round are usually accepted from early August to mid or late September. Application packets will be posted on this web page when available.
About the application process
Under Olympia's guidelines, tourism promotion must be to audiences outside Thurston County.
Successful applicants must enter into a contract with the City, provide liability insurance, demonstrate sufficient cash flow to cover the costs of the services, and submit proof of costs and payment to the City for reimbursement. The City reimburses only for actual costs that are covered as part of the contract.
The Committee's recommendations are advisory. The City Council makes the final decision whether to approve recommendations from the Committee. Per State law, the Council cannot modify a recommendation from the Committee by adding another potential recipient or changing the recommended amount. The Council can choose to not approve a specific recommendation or to send recommendations back to the Committee for further consideration.
Contact Staff Liaison, Kellie Purce Braseth, at 360.753.8361 or firstname.lastname@example.org