Keep compromising on the Salt Lake convention hotel

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  • altawrestlingfan Draper, UT
    March 6, 2014 5:10 p.m.

    I am a little familiar with the downtown hotel market. Here are a few facts that the media isn't reporting when they discuss new convention hotel:

    1. The hospitality business is still off about 20% from its 2007 (pre-recession) levels. Hotels still have 3 to 5 years to go at current levels of increase just to get back to where they were in 2007. A "convention" hotel will only slow this progress.

    2. The private business owners benefit far LESS than does the governmental taxing agencies with regards to funds that come into a hotel--and these agencies have NOTHING AT RISK. Whereas business owners generally have to put down 25 to 30% equity in today's market...tying up millions of dollars. Hotels pay Sales Tax, Room Tax, city and other local taxes, payroll taxes, property taxes, real estate taxes, etc.

    3. The SLC skyline is NOT identifiable. In fact over 60% of American's poled guessed that the SLC skyline was actually the Denver Skyline.

    My summary: We should not build a convention hotel but instead build a skyline gondola system that makes our city unique, fits Utah, and ties all the existing hotels together and to the convention center.

    Problem(s) solved...

  • Ultra Bob Cottonwood Heights, UT
    March 4, 2014 12:50 p.m.

    When visitors come to town and spend their money, who gets the benefits of the money they spend. Mostly it's businessmen, most of whom don't even live in this town. Next in line is the politicians who have additional tax revenue to spend as they desire. Residents may have some low pay jobs but don't see any of the profits.

    Yet it is the residents who are ask to put up money to build attractions and buildings for the new business.

    The statement: "Visionary Utah leaders have invested in highways, public transit, a great convention center and other facilities" is quite probably a lie, it was the ordinary taxpayer who put up the money to build those things.

    Business should pay its own way.

  • Makid Kearns, UT
    March 4, 2014 10:14 a.m.

    The government subsidies aren't going to the hotel but to the meeting space and public parking.

    The hotel is being built with 100% private developer funds.

    The sad thing is that the hotel lobby complained so much about the government building more meeting and exhibit space that they are now getting compensation for lost revenue from the government caused by a private development being built and operated privately.

    How is that for some lobbying. This deal is the same as an apartment complex owner receiving compensation from the government if a new apartment building causes them to lose a tenant.

    Competition doesn't need government compensation when it is private developers vs private developers.

  • Stenar Salt Lake City, UT
    March 4, 2014 9:44 a.m.

    Earl Holding shouldn't have built his hotels, Little and Grand America, so far from the convention center. It is these two hotels, represented by Clint Ensign, that have held SLC back from getting a convention hotel for 20 years by lobbying against a convention hotel every time it comes up. This article ought to have mentioned whom Clint Ensign works for.

  • Ranch Here, UT
    March 4, 2014 6:36 a.m.

    The state shouldn't be building hotels. Leave that to the entrepreneurs.