The McCracken County Fiscal Court is considering using a portion of the transient room tax to reimburse the City of Paducah for relocating the dome pavilion.
Paducah-McCracken County Convention Center Corporation Board Chairman Brian Katz says his group agreed to take ownership of the dome on the condition that the Fiscal Court approves the use of the transient room tax to pay back bonds for relocating the dome and renovating the convention center.
“I think it’s important to recognize that this is not a tax that’s paid by local residents. It’s levied by the county but it’s almost exclusively paid for by non-county residents. And again, the money that is generated by the transient room tax is restricted to uses related to convention facilities and tourism,” Katz said. “So those dollars cannot be used to help finance the jail, they cannot be used to help finance the E-911 system, they cannot be used to finance animal control expenses, they can only be used for tourism and convention center facilities. It’s not like that money can be put to some other use.”
The dome is used to house the annual quilt show. County Judge/Executive Bob Leeper says the fiscal court’s decision should not impact the quilt show.
“The city appears to be moving forward with that. They’ve already purchased the property, they’ve already got a bid on the contract for the concrete pad,” Leeper said. “They’re moving forward with it regardless. So, it’s merely a strategy of trying to get the convention complex under the umbrella of the convention center board and having the city and the county working together to make that happen.”
If the fiscal court does not approve the proposal, Katz says the Convention Center Corporation will not receive the dome pavilion and it will be difficult to fund Convention Center maintenance projects. Leeper says the fiscal court members are researching the issue further before their next meeting December 28th.