Grants to South Carolina nonprofit organizations and local government agencies for tourism-related events, activities, and projects in eligible locations. Funding is intended to improve local tourism by attracting additional visitors and enhancing the visitor experience. Programs must take place on Hilton Head Island.
Requests for funding must be submitted by a non-profit organization. Proof of non-profit status must accompany first time applications, e.g., IRS 501 (c) (3) letter.
As applicable to Hilton Head Island, the State law (see copy attached and section 6-4-10 in particular) specifies three groups, in general, which are entitled to receive bed tax funds after other mandated distributions have been made from the total funds available:
- Town government: "Based on the estimated percentage of costs directly attributed to tourists," Town expenditures for "the criminal justice system, law enforcement, fire protection, solid waste collection and health facilities when required to serve tourists and tourist facilities." See 6-4-10 (b) and (b.4).
- Qualified groups advertising and promoting tourism in order to develop and increase tourism. See 6-4-10 (b.1).
- Qualified sponsors of arts and cultural events and for construction, maintenance and operation of facilities for civic and cultural activities. See 6-4-10 (b.2 and b.3).
The law requires that the funds be used for tourism-related expenditures "primarily in the geographical area... (of Hilton Head Island)." See 6-4-10 (d).
Applications cannot be accepted from individuals, for-profit entities, or ad-hoc committees.
The committee will not look with favor on applications for funds to be spent outside the Town or for activities or enterprises conducted outside the Town.
The Accommodations Tax Advisory Committee will hold a workshop August 10, 2023 at 2:00 p.m. in the Benjamin M. Racusin Council Chambers.
The purpose of this workshop is to assist potential applicants with completing the application for Accommodations Tax Funds. It is highly recommended for applicants to attend the workshop.
Staff will be present to review the technical application process.
Please contact the Committee Secretary Shena Smith at (843) 715-3241 or firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or concerns.
2024 Dates & Deadlines:
- Monday, July 31, 2023, 8 am - Application available online
- Thursday, August 10, 2023, 2 pm - Applicant Workshop
- Friday, September 1, 2023, 4 pm - Application Deadline
- Thursday, September 28, 2023, 9 am - Preliminary Review of Applications
- Thursday, October 12,2023, 9 am - 4:30 pm Applicant Hearings
- Thursday, October 19, 2023, 9 am - 4:30 pm Applicant Hearings
- Thursday, November 2, 2022, 9 am - Review and Recommendations
* Town Council will meet to award the Accommodations Tax Grant Funds at a date to be determined.
All applications must be submitted electronically, in complete form, through the Town of Hilton Head Island Website no later than the deadline date and time.
The Committee may, for extraordinary reasons which prevent timely filing, extend the filing
Applications will first be subjected to Committee review for compliance with the law as to eligibility.
For those applications passing the initial review, the applicants will be asked to make personal presentations at Committee hearings.
- Presentations are scheduled for October 12 and 19, 2023.
- Each applicant will be notified by email of the time scheduled for its presentation.