From: Dixon Pitcher
To: LH MEMBERS, Senators,
Subject: Re: Convention Hotel Bill
Date: Tue Feb 18 16:51:35 MST 2014
Body:
Dear Representatives and Senators,

How can we use public funds to subsidize a thousand room convention hotel? We create a no-fail hotel at the expense of existing hotels that have to live by real world conditions. These hotels that we are going to hurt financially have investors that have families to support. They have to meet payroll every two weeks. They pay real estate and personal property taxes. They've made a substantial commitment to Salt Lake City. The lodging input analysis study finds a substantial negative impact to these existing hotels. It doesn't matter how we spin the story of the tax subsidy. We are using tax payer funds to help pay for a convention hotel at the expense of existing hotels, and to clear our conscience, we'll hand out brochures at the end of the guest's stay at the convention hotel asking them to please next time support one of the other local hotels (I'm sure that's going to make up for their lost revenue). It all comes down to supply and demand. There is no lack of supply in the Salt Lake area, with the exception of twice a year when the outdoor retail show comes into town. And then some of the guests go north and south to find accommodations, which is a blessing to these outlying hotels. If this is going to be such a financial bonanza, as the county purports, why has not private capital come in to build a convention hotel? It is very obvious, anybody doing due diligence and looking at the Star Report and other lodging analyses would find that this would be a risk for private capital—and there is no increase of jobs. Another finding of the study shows that there will be a net loss of jobs to the existing hotels. I tell you this from first-hand knowledge. As you know, I have a conflict of interest here. I understand the issue. I saw what happened in Ogden when the city decided to subsidize a new Hilton Garden Inn to the detriment and financial loss to other hotels. I am not opposed to a convention hotel, but private capital should be the source of the project. 
To compete in the real world of free enterprise is hard enough. But having to compete against a public tax subsidized hotel is unconscionable. 

Representative Dixon Pitcher
From: Curtis Oda < coda@le.utah.gov>
Date: Monday, February 17, 2014 5:07 PM
To: DTS < dpitcher@le.utah.gov>
Subject: Fwd: Convention Hotel Bill

ese changes make it okay or are there still concerns. If so, what are they?
I am always leery when government pays for things the private sector should pay for.
Curt