The June 5, 2012 ballot Measure U did not pass. The proposed tax would have increased the hotel tax 2% (from 10% to 12%) in unincorporated San Mateo County (primarily affecting San Francisco airport tourists and business travelers).
However, increasing the hotel tax in Menlo Park 2% (from 10% to 12%) might pass. Why? Because eight (8) other San Mateo County cities have been successful in passing such a tax. After all, visitors rather than residents pay this tax. Still best tax deal? Stay at a convenient location near San Francisco airport, pay 10%, save 2%.Palo Alto Daily News/Bonnie Eslinger, 6/9/12. "Menlo Park could be next to seek voter approval of hotel tax increase."
.... "Mayor Kirsten Keith said she believes the city has a strong case because it has cut some services, reduced pension benefits for new employees and taken other cost-cutting steps in recent years to whittle away budget deficits.
.... Also, a 12 percent tax on room rates is what's being charged in surrounding cities, so Menlo Park isn't likely to lose business from visitors looking for cheaper lodgings elsewhere, she said. Hotel room rates in Redwood City, Palo Alto, Burlingame, San Mateo, Millbrae, San Bruno, Pacifica and Brisbane all are taxed at 12 percent, according to Augustine." Read Article.
Reference - Hotel cost examples: Expedia, Menlo Park Hotels, (really Menlo Park, Palo Alto, Redwood City. Or, Expedia, San Francisco Airport Hotels, (really South San Francisco, Burlingame, Millbrae, San Bruno, Foster City).
Posted by Kathy Meeh