I live close to Washington D.C. and after reading the article about the Room Tax going up again, I feel like the DC residents who have “Taxation without Representation” on their license plates.
For the past 20 years, the Hotel and Restaurant Association has joined forces with Ocean City leaders to collect taxes and spend millions of dollars basically trying to expand the Ocean City season.
For most condo owners, the season is from Memorial Day through Labor Day.
The special events that occur outside this date range are weekend events which brings customers to hotels and restaurants but not much for condo owners.
During the season when most of the rentals are weekly, condos offer an advantage over hotel rooms with lower per person costs coupled with a kitchen that can cut food costs in half.
However, if someone is coming here for a special event, they have little interest in bring supplies for cooking their own meals and thus look for a hotel room rather than a condo.
The bottom line here is that additional taxes are being collected on condo rentals for the direct benefit of hotels and restaurants and not condo owners.
If Ocean City were to cease all advertising, I doubt it would have any significant impact on condo rentals. Advertising is necessary so that people outside the Ocean City area know when these special events are occurring and make a reservation to attend.
However, the cost of this advertising should be borne by those who are reaping the benefit and not by condo owners.
Silver Spring, Maryland