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City seeks tax hike
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McMinnville officials are taking on an uphill battle with the state to increase the city’s hotel tax to more than 2.5 percent.The measure was tabled for further consideration Oct. 10 after receiving a correspondence from state Sen. Janice Bowling advising them they could be held at 2.5 percent by state legislators, despite legislation that allows collection of up to 5 percent. Bowling said the “Tennessee Department of Tourism, the Tennessee Department of Revenue, and the Senate Finance, Ways, and Means Committee prefer the total amount of tax paid by any hotel or motel guest in the state of Tennessee not to exceed 17.25 percent.”Alderman Mike Neal made a push for the increase, saying the city being held at 2.5 percent is unfair because the average hospitality tax across the state is 4.5 percent.The cap set by the state is not law, said Neal, and the total tax in other communities is already in excess of 17.25 percent.“I don’t have a problem with them setting a 17.25 percent total combined, if that’s law,” said Neal. “That is not law.