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City of Purcell

Tourism war chest

Lodging tax revenues still untapped

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Purcell’s tourism war chest is growing.

Since a 5 percent lodging tax went into effect July 1, 2021, receipts have been accumulating untouched except for a $68.50 expenditure to set up a domain name.

Victor Lohn, Purcell city treasurer, said the total tax revenue through January 31 is $66,009.05

That is an average of $9,429.86 per month over seven months.

If that rate holds steady, the lodging tax could conceivably generate $113,158.32 in its first year ending June 30.

In its first month, the tax brought in $12,553.76.

The lodging tax won approval at the polls with a small voter turnout Feb. 9, 2021.

That vote was 203 to 103.

Proceeds are earmarked for tourism promotion.

A 7-member lodging tax committee has the say on how best to use the funds to promote tourism.

Committee members are Purcell city council member Theda Engert, Parks & Recreation director John Blue, city manager Dale Bunn, Heart of Oklahoma Chamber of Commerce director Elisabeth Baker, merchant Cindy Millsap and citizen-at-large Allen Eubanks.

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