City wants lodging tax; money collected in error placed in escrow

HORN LAKE — Horn Lake hopes to get the ball rolling soon on a referendum for a hotel-motel tax that could generate thousands of dollars in revenue without taxing residents.

The referendum is the latest chapter in the troubled history of the city’s hotel-motel tax, which dates back to 2002. State legislators approved a four-year tax and renewed it in 2006. Another extension was not considered in 2010 and the tax therefore expired, but officials continued to collect it.

After the error was caught, money that had been collected without authorization was placed in escrow and has been there since. City Administrator Andrea Freeze told The Commercial Appeal yesterday she thought there was about $105,000 in escrow currently. Lawmakers this past session approved new legislation authorizing a hotel-motel tax and made it retroactive.

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