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How taxes have affected Washington County

February 05, 2003

  • The Maryland General Assembly in 2000 approved legislation to increase Washington County's hotel-motel tax from 3 percent to 6 percent, effective July 1, 2000.

    Under the law, 45 percent of the total hotel rental tax proceeds goes to the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau.

    The remaining money goes to a special Washington County fund, to be spent only to develop tourism attractions, to enhance economic development or to support cultural and recreational projects.

  • In a related second law, the state changed the formula for distribution of tip jar proceeds, increasing the percentage going to the Washington County Volunteer Fire and Rescue Association from 40 percent to 50 percent, which freed up county general fund money previously going to the association.

  • Under a third law approved at the same time, the county was mandated to spend $500,000 of general funds annually to pay down the water-sewer debt. The county has been able to use money that previously went to the Fire and Rescue Association to pay down the debt.

    That law also ordered the county to continue paying $2.7 million in general fund contributions to the water, sewer and pretreatment funds.

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Source: Washington County Attorney's office.

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