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The frequently asked questions and answers that appear below are applicable to all Accommodation Tax funding categories. Category specific FAQs will be found under the Funding Categories menu option.
Q. How do I apply for Accommodation Tax funding for my event?
A. Application forms for Accommodation Tax funding are available online or can be obtained by contacting the Economic Development Brandon office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 204.729.2132 or toll free at 866.729.2132 or by stopping by the office located on the main floor of City Hall at 410 9th Street. Applications will be considered on an ongoing first come first serve basis by the City of Brandon through application to the Director of Economic Development. When possible, applicants are requested to submit the completed Application, no less than 90 days before the event.
All applications should be clearly written or typed using the same format as requested. The City of Brandon will review the application to verify that all information has been received. If there is missing information or documents, the City will notify the requesting organization of any additional needs. Once the application is complete, it will be reviewed utilizing existing evaluation matrix templates. The Director of Economic Development Brandon has authority to approve grant applications up to $20,000, over that amount a recommendation will go to City Council to approve the application during a regularly scheduled Council meeting.
The applicant or designate must be present at the Brandon City Council meeting when the funding recommendation is being considered. If funding is approved, a funding agreement will be drawn up for signature. The receiving organization is required to return two signed original funding agreements prior to the event taking place. If the documents are not returned, that is considered a rejection of the funding offer.
Q. If I am approved for funding from the Accommodation Tax Reserve, will I receive all the approved funding in advance of my event?
A. No, approved applicants will receive a 40% advance of the approved grant prior to the event after signing the funding agreement and the remaining 60% once the final report has been received and verified by the City of Brandon. If the projected room nights are not realized, the approved grant may be reduced. The final report is due within 90 days of the event concluding.
Q. I need to pay for my event’s significant costs up front, why is it that I will only receive partial funding for my event prior to its start?
A. The level of funding awarded to an event is based on key items such as the room nights generated by the event, number of hotels / motels utilized, and media exposure. This information is not available until the event concludes. By only advancing a portion of the allocated funding, it ensures that the funding provided to an event is in keeping with the actual impact of the event.
Q. I am organizing an event that is great for Brandon but does not generate overnight stays, am I eligible for funding?
A. No, only events that generate overnight stays (limited to hotel/motel rooms, Brandon University, B&B rooms) are eligible for funding from the Accommodation Tax Reserve.
Q. What is the process for determining which events will receive Accommodation Tax funding?
A. Once the application is complete, it will be reviewed utilizing existing evaluation matrix templates. Based on the results of the matrix, the Director of Economic Development Brandon has authority to approve grant applications up to $20,000.
The Director of Economic Development will make a recommendation to City Council, based on the results of the matrix, for applications over $20,000. Brandon City Council will make the final decision on which projects will be funded and the funding levels for approved projects. Funding preference should be given to not for profit organizations and events that do not run a deficit.
Q. How long does it take to receive approval for funding?
A. Approval will take anywhere from 4-12 weeks.
Q. Why did the City of Brandon implement an Accommodation Tax?
A. The purpose of the accommodation tax is to generate revenue to support event acquisition, event retention, and/or capital repairs and upgrade initiatives related to same within the City of Brandon and non-event capital projects undertaken by the Keystone Centre that will support economic development and encourage tourism within the City of Brandon. Brandon City Council recognized event hosting as a significant economic generator for Brandon and one that would benefit from increased investment. New events typically take some time to develop a strong attendance, volunteer base and sponsors. These funds will be used to provide new events with time to build the necessary support for success. Existing events that are looking to expand but need some assistance to do so will also benefit from the available funding. Likewise recognizing that the event market is extremely competitive, the funds will be available to ensure Brandon is able to retain events that are actively being pursued by other communities. Last but not least, if capital improvements are the deciding factor between an event organizer selecting Brandon or going elsewhere, this tax can also be used to fund capital additions or enhancements.
Q. How much do visitors to Brandon pay for the Accommodation Tax?
A. The accommodation tax is a flat fee of $3.00 per night per room plus GST. A flat fee was chosen over a percentage amount so that the amount is easily known and easy to calculate for guests regardless of the price paid for accommodation.
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