Hotel Occupancy Tax Use Guidelines Under Texas State Law and Funding Application Form

State Law: As authorized by state law, the City of Duncanville collects a Hotel Occupancy Tax (HOT Funds) from hotels, bed & breakfasts, and other lodging facilities. Under state law, the revenue from the HOT Funds may be used only to directly promote tourism and the hotel and convention industry. Chapter 351 of the Tax Code states that the use of HOT Funds is limited to:

  • a) Convention Centers and Visitor Information Centers: the acquisition of sites for and the construction, improvement, enlarging, equipping, repairing operation and maintenance of convention center facilities or visitor information centers, or both.
  • b) Registration of Convention Delegates: the furnishing of facilities, personnel, and materials for the registration of convention delegates or registrants.
  • c) Advertising, Solicitations and Promotions that Directly Promote Tourism and the Hotel and Convention Industry: advertising and conducting solicitations and promotional programs to attract tourists and convention delegates or registrants to the municipality.
  • d) Promotions of the Arts that Directly Promote Tourism and the Hotel and Convention Industry: the encouragement, promotion, improvement, and application of the arts that can be shown to have direct impact on tourism and the hotel/convention industry. The impact may be that the art facility or event can show hotel nights that are booked due to their events or that guests at hotels attend the arts event. Eligible forms of art include instrumental and vocal music, dance, drama, folk art, creative writing, architecture, design and allied fields, painting, sculpture photography, graphic and craft arts, motion picture, radio, television, tape and sound recording, and other arts related to the presentation, performance, execution, and exhibition of these major art forms.
  • e) Historical Restoration and Preservation Activities that Directly Promote Tourism and the Hotel and Convention Industry: historical restoration and preservation projects or activities or advertising and conducting solicitation and promotional programs to encourage tourists and convention delegates to visit preserved historic sites or museums.
  • f) Sporting Event Expenses that Substantially Increase Economic Activity at Hotels: expenses including promotional expenses, directly related to a sporting event in, which the majority of participants are tourists. The event must substantially increase economic activity at hotels within the city.
  • g) Funding transportation systems for transporting tourists from hotels to and near the city to any of the following destinations:
  1. the commercial center of the city;
  2. a convention center in the city;
  3. other hotels in or near the city; or
  4. tourist attractions in or near the city. The law specifically prohibits the use of the local hotel tax to cover the costs for general city transit costs to transport the general public.
  • h) Signage directing tourists to sights and attractions that are visited frequently by hotel guests in the municipality.

City of Duncanville: The City of Duncanville accepts applications from groups and businesses whose program fits into one or more of the above categories. In order to ensure funding consideration for your event, requests for funds should be submitted on this official application by July 31st. The application will be reviewed by the City of Duncanville staff to ensure the funding requests meets state guidelines. Once the application has been reviewed and is determined it meets minimum state qualifications for funding, the applicant will be invited to provide a presentation on their funding request to City Staff. The request will then be analyzed to determine the event’s total economic impact to the community. Staff will notify the applicant when their request and staff’s recommendation will be presented to the City Council for consideration. The applicant is required to attend the City Council meeting in order for the request to be considered. The applicant may be asked to provide the City Council a presentation regarding their request as well.

Eligibility and Priority for Hotel Tax Funds: Priority will be given to those events and entities based on their ability to generate overnight visitors to Duncanville. The amount that you are requesting should consider the gross amount of hotel night revenue that you are predicting that will be created or sustained by your event. If an event will not generate any meaningful hotel night activity, it is not eligible for receipt of hotel occupancy tax funds. HOT Funds awarded will be based on the number of hotel rooms rented and the economic impact to the city. Events can prove this potential to generate overnight visitors by:

  • a) historic information on the number of room nights used during previous years of the same events;
  • b) current information on the size of a room block that has been reserved at area hotels to accommodate anticipated overnight guests attending the funded event;
  • c) historical information on the number of guests at hotel or other lodging facilities that attended the funded event (through surveys, guest directories, or other sources); and/or
  • d) examples of the planned marketing of the programs and activities that will likely generate overnight visitors to local lodging properties from this event.

Use of Revenues from Event: A portion of the revenues from any event and/or project receiving any type of funding assistance from the HOT Funds should be channeled back into the future costs of operating that same event or the continued operation of the project. No other outside event(s), project, charity, etc., sponsored by the host organization may profit from the City of Duncanville funding of a particular event.

Supplemental Information Required with Application:

  • Proposed Marketing Plan for Funded Event
  • Schedule of Activities or Events Relating to the Funded Project
  • Past Marketing Materials used to promote the event