NAPLES, Fla. County commissioners believe sports tourism can bring in money when beaches can’t.
County commissioners are considering a tourist tax hike to build a new $80 million sports complex that could attract visitors during months when fewer people head to the shore.
Those who depend on tourism, like Ron Atkinson, like the idea of more business in the summer.
“As an Uber driver, it would obviously help me quite a bit,” he said. “There will be events (with) alcohol too. It would help me get people there and back.”
To build the complex, commissioners would raise the tourist tax to 5 percent from its current rate of 4 percent, leaving some visitors concerned about the extra cost they would face.
“I love sports,” said tourist Cindy Kaufman. “I think sports are great, but don’t put it on regular people.”
Collier County has one of the lowest tourists taxes in the state.
Lee and Charlotte counties are at 5 percent. Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties are at 6 percent.