Pinellas deemed 'high tourism impact' county

9:20 AM, Jan 20, 2014   |    comments
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CLEARWATER, Florida (AP) - Pinellas County surpassed a $30 million milestone in bed taxes last year, placing it among the state's top destinations.

The Tampa Tribune reports that exceeding more than $600 million in hotel sales in the 2013 calendar year triggers a state rule that allows the county to raise the tax on overnight stays by an extra 1 percent.

See Also: Tampa's tourism industry is recovering

Pinellas joins only five other Florida destinations that have achieved the state distinction as a high tourism impact county, including the mega resorts of South Florida and Orlando.

Hotel sales, occupancy and daily rates surpassed all previous records last year, with bed tax revenue up 18 percent over the county's pre-recession record.

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