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Door County Tourism Zone History and Legal Agreements

TOURISM WORKS FOR US: The history of room tax in Door County…

In May of 2007, the Door County Tourism Zone Commission was established out of the hard work from a group of concerned citizens.  Studies showed that Door County was losing its market share to other locations in the state; the only way for Door County to remain a sought after destination was to generate money for a broader marketing campaign.  The Door County economy has benefited from those efforts with improved national and regional exposure as a result of the establishment of room tax in Door County.

TOURISM WORKS FOR US: What is room tax and who has to pay it?

For the privilege of occupancy in any lodging facilities, each transient is subject to and pays a tax in the amount of 8.0% of the rent charged by each lodging provider.  Lodging facilities come in many forms and must be permitted for transient rental.  Common examples include: Hotels, motels, B&B’S, cabins, cottages, lodges, homes, condos or rental rooms.  This is not an all-inclusive list.  The DCTZC evaluates new forms of lodging for permitting requirements as types of lodging continue to develop and change.

Persons renting their lodging facilities must collect the tax from their customer and submit the tax to the Door County Tourism Zone the same way a hotel or motel collects tax from its guests.  Property management companies, online travel companies and other third party rental companies are also responsible for collecting the tax.  The entity that collects payment for the room is the entity that is responsible for collecting and remitting room tax to the Door County Tourism Zone Commission. The definition of tourists or transients, a person has to be away from his or her permanent address in order to meet the definition.  It does not matter if the tourist or transient is there for the season, the month, a week a day or less.  If lodging is rented to a tourist or transient, it requires a permit.


Important Agreements


How is room tax used?

         The Door County Tourism Zone collects the tax and contracts with a tourism marketing agency. 

          Beginning in 2022, the Tourism Zone will be distributing 70% of the room tax collected to the Destination Door County, the designated marketing agency for Door County. 

o   Destination Door County then distributes 19% of the 70% to CMF.

o   All remaining room tax revenues are used to market Door County to increase interest in visitor ship and generating overnight stays.

o   The Destination Door County develops the annual market plan and budget.

§  The DDC hires and evaluates vendors

§  The DDC executes the marketing plan


·         The Door County Tourism Zone disburses 30% of room tax revenues collected to the municipality in which the tax was collected.

·         The Door County Tourism Zone Commission enforces the ordinance.

·         Municipalities fund the operation of the Tourism Zone office and are reimbursed for the payment by Destination Door County. This funding is used for:

o   All Commissioners are volunteers

o   The DCZTC has a full time administrator and part-time assistant administrator

o   Collection and enforcement is handled by the DCTZC

o   The DCTZC is audited annually by an outside municipal accounting firm

o   All money collected by the DCTZC from permit holders is handled by an accounting firm