Responsibilities

The Lodging Tax Advisory Committee (LTAC) advises the City Council on the allocation of lodging tax revenue for programs and activities that will encourage tourism in Federal Way.

The membership of the LTAC is appointed by the City Council and consists of up to seven members: one member is an elected official of the city who serves as the chair; three members are representatives of businesses required to collect the tax; and three members are persons involved in activities authorized to be funded by revenue received from the tax.

Committee Members 

  • Lydia Assefa-Dawson, Councilmember, Chair
  • Mike Dunwiddie, King County Aquatic Center 
  • Kristin Wells, Seattle/Federal Way Marriott Courtyard
  • Rose Ehl, Federal Way Farmers Market
  • Darcy Pickett, Hampton Inn & Suites
  • Juliana Bliss, Evergreen Inn & Suites
  • Vacant

Meetings


Lodging Tax Funds & Application Process

The City of Federal Way uses lodging tax funds to help build a strong visitor economy. The City is working on ways to strengthen our position for day and overnight visitors, with the goal of positioning Federal Way as a fun and welcoming destination in the Puget Sound region.

 

What Is Lodging Tax Funding?

The City of Federal Way receives 1% of lodging taxes charged on most overnight stays in hotels and motels in the City. These funds are commonly referred to as lodging funds or hotel/motel funds. One element of the program is a competitive Tourism Enhancement Grant (TEG) to support sports, cultural, arts, community events, and nonevent programs that will occur in the Federal Way area. All funds are awarded on a reimbursement basis and will not be awarded until after all requirements have been met and all documentation received.

 

How Can Lodging Tax Funds Be Used?

Washington State law strictly limits how lodging tax funds can be used. Lodging tax funds must be used for activities, operations, and expenditures designed to increase tourism. Specifically, lodging funds can be used for: 

  • Tourism marketing;
  • Marketing and operations of special events and festivals designed to attract tourists;
  • Operations and capital expenditures of tourism-related facilities owned or operated by a municipality or a public facilities district; or
  • Operations of tourism-related facilities owned or operated by nonprofit organizations.

 

Application Process

State law requires that lodging tax funding applications be reviewed and approved by both the City’s Lodging Tax Advisory Committee (LTAC) and City Council. All TEG applications must include projections on the number of estimated visitors to the event or activity being funded.  Grants are issued twice a year. The first period is January through June, with applications due by April 25th and the second period is July through December, with applications due by October 25th for the current year.

The following outlines the process to obtain lodging tax funding:

 

Step 1

Email staff person listed below to receive an TEG application. Staff can also help determine if the proposal meets the requirements of Washington State law.

Step 2

Complete and submit the required TEG application to staff person listed below. To be considered in the current annual cycle, applications must be received by October 15 (first grant period) or April 15 (second grant period) of the current year.  

Note: The City may require modifications to the application to ensure it has sufficient detail to adequately explain your proposal and the deliverables.

Step 3

Your TEG application will be scheduled to go before the LTAC. You should be prepared to attend the meeting and present your proposal and application to the LTAC. Meetings are held on the second Wednesday of the month at 10:00 A.M. The location of the meeting is at City Hall or via Zoom, but may change to another location within the City.

Step 4

If LTAC approves your TEG application, it will be forwarded to the City Council for review and consideration.

Step 5

If the City Council approves your TEG application, your organization will be required to enter into a municipal services contract with the City.

Step 6

You will be required to submit a Post Event/Nonevent Program Report within 60 days of the event to the City outlining how the City’s funds have been used. The exact scope of the reports and details provided will be determined as part of the municipal services contract with the City.

 

Thinking About Applying or Have Questions?

Contact staff listed below to set up a meeting with staff to discuss your proposal.

 

STAFF CONTACT:

Julianna La Brake

julianna.labrake@cityoffederalway.com
33325 8th Ave S
Federal Way, WA 98003
(253) 835-2408