Richmond Region Tourism Improvement District
Exciting news: The Richmond Region recently approved a new Tourism Improvement District (TID). The TID is expected to generate as much as $8.2 million annually to support the promotion of the region as a leisure, conference and sports tourism destination.
If you're a hotel and need information for best practices in collecting and remitting the TID fee, please click here for a document that will answer questions about system set up, sales tax and remittance to the localities.
Here’s why the TID matters and frequently asked questions
What is the TID?
- The TID provides supplemental and protected funds exclusively for tourism promotion activities.
- The TID is a self-assessment by the region’s hotel industry. A 2% assessment is levied on lodging businesses with 41+ rooms within the counties of Chesterfield, Hanover and Henrico, the city of Richmond and the town of Ashland.
- Richmond Region Tourism manages and directs the spending of funds on behalf of, and with oversight from, the industry via a committee representative of the assessed lodging businesses.
- Funds are used only for specific purposes associated with driving visitation and hotel occupancy – in turn, benefiting the assessed business, the region and the entire community.
- Assessed lodging businesses pass the assessment on to customers. The assessment is aimed at overnight visitors, not residents.
- Collection of the TID began July 1, 2023.
Is the TID a tax?
No. It is an assessment. Hotels opted in through petitions.
By law, the funds must benefit the hotels. Unlike a tax, assessments cannot be diverted to other government services. A committee of hotel owners and operators has oversight as to how the funds are spent.
Who charges the TID fee?
Lodging businesses with 41+ rooms within the counties of Chesterfield, Hanover and Henrico, the city of Richmond and the town of Ashland.
Who pays the TID fee?
Hotels pass the TID fee along to their customers.
How is the assessment collected?
Hotels collect the assessment via the room folio and remit to their respective jurisdictions. The jurisdictions remit the assessment to Richmond Region Tourism to execute the programs and activities in accordance with the Service Plan, annual workplan and budget.
The initial term is 10 years, followed by a renewal process.
What are the funds used for?
The funds are dedicated to sales, marketing, promotions and special event programs that will increase demand for overnight tourism and market hotels as visitor, meeting and event destinations, thereby increasing demand for room night sales. TID funds will also cover membership dues to the Virginia Restaurant, Lodging and Travel Association (VRLTA) for all participating hotels.TID funds are not used for capital or infrastructure improvements.
Who governs the TID?
A subcommittee of Richmond Region Tourism’s Board made up of hotels representing all sizes and localities in the TID. The TID Governance Committee works with RRT annually to approve the budget, work plan and process for measuring success.
The TID Governance Committee includes
- Neil Amin, Shamin Hotels, Chair
- Ashley Lowery, Apple REIT
- Paul Cooper, Retro Hospitality
- Mayush Mehta, JP Hospitality, Vice Chair
- Nirav Mehta, S-Z Management
- Nick Patel, Kalyan Hospitality
- Ravi Patel, SINA Hospitality
- Robert Reed, SMI
- Mark Yardis, Shamin Hotels
- Jack Berry, Richmond Region Tourism CEO*
- Angela Kelley-Wiecek, RRT Board Chair*
Who administers the TID?
Richmond Region Tourism is the administering nonprofit and executes the annual work plan. To request a copy of the approved work plan, email Katherine O’Donnell.
How was the TID approved?
Hotel owners or their representatives signed petitions in favor of the TID. Petitions were required for each jurisdiction where hotels are located. The law required support from more than 51% of hotels in each jurisdiction based on contribution to the TID fund (based on hotel revenue).
After the hotel petition threshold was met, each locality passed an ordinance enacting the TID.
What legislation created a pathway for the TID?
During the 2021 General Assembly, lawmakers passed Senate Bill 1298 to allow any Virginia locality a pathway to establish a local TID. Afterwards, Richmond Region Tourism worked with hotel operators within the Region as well as the VRLTA Government Affairs staff, to create the TID.
Hotels in the Richmond Region TID are automatically members of VRLTA, what does that mean?
All hotel properties in the TID will become members Virginia Restaurant, Lodging & Travel Association. The annual membership fee will be paid by the TID. VRLTA is the singular voice for the hospitality industries in Virginia and works to further the legislative priorities and interests of Virginia's restaurants, hotels, attractions, and destinations. The association also provides educational offerings, networking opportunities, the sharing of information, and other support. To learn more, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Why are we doing this? Why now?
The region has been at a competitive disadvantage. Our competitor destinations have had more resources than Richmond Region Tourism to drive overnight stays. With the enactment of the TID, funds are now in place to recruit new business for new facilities like the Henrico County Sport Complex and GreenCity which are being developed around the Region.
TID in the News
Click on any article below to read more about the TID program's progress