Total TOT (transit occupancy tax) revenue for November 2021 was $808,382 – yet another record for the Town (the previous November record was $598,689 in 2019). November 2021 collection is more comparable to November 2019 collections, with an increase of $209,693 or 35% over November 2019 TOT collections. As a reminder, November 2020 was $375,054.
Like that, with only five months into the fiscal year 2021/2022, the Town of Yountville is at 96% of its budgeted TOT revenue! This revenue source will supply close to 70% of our Town’s unrestricted general fund.
An atmospheric rise in ADR (average daily rate) continues, with the Townwide average rate being $858 for a guest to rent a hotel room for one night in Yountville. Large hotels with 50 or more rooms (total rooms of 393) remain in the clouds at $936, and small hotels with under 50 rooms (total rooms of 62) offer a much more “reasonable” average rate of $455.
The interesting mix here is that the Town continues to see fewer visitors from the hotels as the occupancy levels are still below previous years. While the smaller hotels maintain occupancy levels near or exceeding previous years, the larger hotels are still lagging. Yountville saw a 58% occupancy in November, with large hotels at 56% occupancy and smaller hotels at 69%. Yes, it takes fewer people to fill 62 rooms but is this because of the rates that are being charged? Or is it a perception of safety in less populated space? It will be interesting to watch this trend.
Another benefit to these record numbers of TOT revenue is the money flowing into the Measure S fund for housing. This account remains a great resource as the Town continues to look at and act on our housing needs. This year Measure S has given the Town the resources to purchase a home in Yountville and keep it deed-restricted for workforce housing. As the Town moves through the current fiscal year, they look to have close to $2M in its fund balance.
Also, once the new fiscal year starts in July 2022, our Town Council will decide how best to distribute this excess of TOT revenue that feeds into the unrestricted general fund. We will surely exceed our record year of TOT collection in the fiscal year 2018/2019 that was $7.5M.