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Grants to Washington Organizations to Promote Tourism in Eligible Locations

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Hotel Motel Tax Grant

City of Richland


Agency: Local

GrantWatch ID #149037

Grant Description

Previous Page Version

Grants to Washington organizations for projects and events that promote local tourism in eligible areas. Funding is intended for the promotion of special events and festivals to attract visitors. Priority will be given to proposals that generate the greatest economic benefit. Large events requiring overnight hotel stays should therefore be favored over smaller and/or single-day events. Activities must take place in Richland.

To be considered for funding, proposals must be logistically held in Richland or evidence provided that lodging will increase in Richland. Proposals must also meet the criteria as established in State law (RCW 67.28.1815) and prohibits use of tax receipts for any other purposes. State law requires these funds be:

“…used solely for the purpose of paying all or any part of the cost of tourism promotion, acquisition of tourism-related facilities, or operation of tourism-related facilities…”

Tourism promotion is defined in RCW 67.28.080 as “…activities and expenditures designed to increase tourism, including but not limited to advertising, publicizing, or otherwise distributing information for the purpose of attracting and welcoming tourists; developing strategies to expand tourism; operating tourism promotion agencies; and funding marketing of special events and festivals designed to attract tourists.”

In addition, City Council policy requires that proposals comply with the following criteria:

1.  Events/projects that produce a broad base for hotel/motel occupancy will be given higher priority over the financing of individual festivals, concerts, or shows.

2.  The City's hotel/motel tax grant should "leverage" other funds. 

3. A priority will be placed in off season programs and to those events which generate maximum economic benefit. Large events requiring overnight hotel stays should therefore be favored over smaller and/or single day events.

4.  Given the City Council's desire to establish Richland as a center of athletic and cultural excellence, grants should be focused toward sporting, cultural, and leisure events. Creation and promotion of activities and events directed at young professionals/families that visit the area will strongly be encouraged. 

All applications will be reviewed by the Lodging Tax Advisory Committee (LTAC) which will then make recommendations to the City Council. The final funding decision is up to the City Council. The LTAC places an emphasis on the following when evaluating each application: 

  • How many room nights will the project generate?
  • How reliable is the information provided?
  • Validation of room nights generated will be required and there may be a placement of $5/room night generated cap up to a maximum grant amount.
  • Does the project promote Richland and Richland hotels/motels outside of the Bi-County area?
  • The Committee favors providing seed money to new events. 
  • The LTAC encourages all events and organizations to work towards total self-sufficiency.

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Additional Eligibility Criteria:

Organizations may apply for projects and events to take place in Richland.

Pre-Application Information:

The 2023 Hotel / Motel Grant Application Period is Open Now Through Friday, October 14.

The City's hotel/motel tax grant should "leverage" other funds. Unless the requesting agency is sponsoring an event that depends largely on volunteer efforts, hotel/motel grants should consequently not exceed 30% of the function's total cash budget.

Use separate applications for each individual project/event.

Term of Contract:

These funds will be available in calendar year 2022.

Contact Information:

Apply online: https://richlandwa.seamlessdocs.com/f/2023HotelMotelApplication

If you have any questions, please Contact: Gail Everett, Communications & Marketing Specialist, by email at geverett@ci.richland.wa.us or by phone 509-942-7730.

Applications must be submitted to the Communications and Marketing Office, Richland City Hall, 625 Swift Blvd., MS 39, Richland, Washington 99352.

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