San Diego’s hoteliers got what they wanted from the city on Tuesday. The City Council gave them more control over the Convention Center’s operations. The decision comes on the eve of the hoteliers’ vote on financing the center’s expansion through higher hotel-room taxes.
The hotel owners are trying to squeeze greater influence over the center in exchange for their support of the expansion. By controlling the center’s sales and marketing, they could direct more events to their own hotels and offer better deals to groups wanting to book the center.
They argue fattening their bottom lines also fattens the city’s tax revenues. Organized labor and Convention Center staff contend that giving hotels power over the center’s marketing could hurt existing operations and leave taxpayers liable if sales goals aren’t met.