King City approves new rule to tax hotel guests who stay longer than 30 days

Concerns over impacts to temporary farmworkers

KING CITY, Calif. - UPDATED 11/28/2017: New regulations on hotels and motels aren't sitting well with some Central Coast farm workers. The city council approved a new rule that caps the number of rooms hotels can rent out long term.

This new law will also force people to continue paying a ten percent tax if they stay in a room longer than 30 days. Another part of the ordinance states that only a portion of rooms can go to long term guests like temporary farm workers. 

Most officials think it benefits the city but many farm workers and hotel owners disagree.

Though the new law states that people can only stay at hotels for thirty days, they can check in again for another thirty after that.

Mayor Mike LeBarre insists that the ordinance does not displace temporary farm workers in King City.

"The city's working very hard and nothing in this ordinance displaces anybody," LeBarre said.

Hotel owners and farm workers also taking issue with another part of the ordinance. It only allows hotels to rent out 75 percent of their rooms to long term guests. Something the city says allows for more room for tourists. 

"King City don't have 100 percent tourists we only have 5 percent tourists for other place and we depend on workers," said Deep Desai, a King City Hotel Owner.

"At the end of everything they just want the money," said farm worker Alfredo Rodriguez, "That's the truth and they don't care about us they say "Oh that you're welcome here, we care about you, no they don't."

But the mayor says that they do welcome AG workers and work is being done to provide better temporary housing for them.

"We are actively pursuing every thing, every grant that we can to make that happen within our city," LeBarre said.

PREVIOUS STORY: King City leaders approved new regulations on hotels and motels that could impact temporary farmworkers.

The new ordinance would limit stays to 30 days and guests who stay longer than that will have to pay a 10 percent transient occupancy tax or TOT.

KION’s Zach Fuentes is following the story and will have more at 10&11.

Previous story click here.

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