City officials plan to draft, propose, and work for passage of legislation in three areas.
Enable use of state Hotel Tax revenue for qualifying hotel projects. State law allows local cities to provide a rebate of a portion of state Hotel Tax revenue for certain hotel projects, but the law is tightly bracketed to benefit only a handful of cities. While a strong case could be made for making that option available to all cities as a matter of fairness, at this time Lewisville is most interested in being bracketed into the law so we can compete more effectively with such cities as Frisco and Plano
- This bill has been filed; see details below.
- Exempt small interest payments under Prompt Pay requirements. Cities should be accountable for paying their bills on time, and Prompt Pay legislation does this by requiring cities to pay interest on any invoice paid more than 30 days beyond its due date. However, this sometimes results in extremely small interest payments that require additional staff workload that far exceeds that value of the interest due. Current law [Sec. 2251.026(j)] exempts institutions of higher education (state agencies) from paying interest if it is equal to or less than $5. This same exemption should be extended to all cities statewide as a way to improve efficient use of local government resources.
- Authorize recovery of credit card processing fees by cities. Current state law [Section 132.003(c) & (d)] allows Texas counties to recover credit card processing fees by assessing a handling fee reasonably related to the county’s processing costs and equal to no more than 5 percent of the total charge or a flat rate of $5 per transaction. Cities are allowed to collect a percentage fee, but do not have the option of a flat fee that is available to counties. A flat fee is easier and more efficient to administer than a percentage fee. State law should be extended to give cities the same options as counties.
On Feb. 14, State Rep. Ron Simmons filed House Bill 1853 on behalf of the City of Lewisville. If passed and signed into law, this bill would give Lewisville the option of seeking a rebate of state hotel and sales tax to assist with development of qualifying projects related to convention center hotels. Current law gives this option to a limited group of Texas cities, but HB-1853 would add Lewisville to that group. The bill received a public hearing in the House Ways & Means Committee on April 19. Mayor Rudy Durham testified in support of HB-1853.
To follow HB 1853, visit the Texas Legislature Online.