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Collection for new tourist tax delayed

Cancun, Q.R. — The new tourist tax that was set to begin collections for September 1 is being delayed while officials finalize agreements.

The newly implemented Environmental Sanitation Law, which would collect a 20 peso tax per room per night from local lodging establishments, will not be ready by September 1. As part of the agreement, a trust must first be set up to house the expected 132 million peso-per-year income that is expected to be collected.

According to the agreement, “the collection of the environmental sanitation right provided for in this decree, will start once the trust is set up for proper administration.”

Approximately 337 hotels, inns, hostels and guesthouses will act as retainers for the 20 pesos, however, authorities have yet to reach agreements with hotels. Manuel Paredes Mendoza and Andrea Lotito, director and counselor of the Hotel Association of the Riviera Maya, said that there is still no formal request by the municipal authorities for the trust.

According to them, the administration trust will be conformed by a technical committee that is made up of five representatives of the Solidaridad City Council, among them the treasurer and the municipal president, as well as four members of the hotel sector.

Councilman Gustavo Maldonado said that there is no reason to postpone the collection and that this week he will request meetings with Asunción Ramirez Castillo, municipal treasurer, to discuss the progress of the new tax.

According to the latest announcement, 60 percent of the Environmental Sanitation Law tax will now go toward a coastal management program to reverse beach loss, while the balance will be used for other elements such as disposal of solid waste, street lighting and public safety.