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To the polls!

SIBLEY, Iowa -- Last September, plans for a new hotel in Osceola County were announced. Investors with JRJ Hospitality will construct a $3.655 million motel along Iowa 60 that is slated to open this fall. Citizens in Osceola County have an opport...

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Travelers to Osceola County will be greeted this fall with a new AmericInn Hotel similar to the one pictured above. The rural residents will vote Tuesday on a 5 percent hotel/motel tax. Submitted Photo

SIBLEY, Iowa - Last September, plans for a new hotel in Osceola County were announced. Investors with JRJ Hospitality will construct a $3.655 million motel along Iowa 60 that is slated to open this fall. Citizens in Osceola County have an opportunity Tuesday to vote on a 5 percent hotel tax.

 

The vote

 

On Tuesday, a county-wide special election will be held to seek approval of a five-percent hotel/motel tax. Only those in the unincorporated (rural) areas of the county will be eligible to vote. The Osceola County Economic Development Commission (OCEDC) is on record as supporting the project and is encouraging residents to consider voting “yes” for this proposal.
If approved, it is projected that the 5 percent hotel/motel tax could raise between $30,000 and $40,000 annually in new revenue for Osceola County.
“This is a win-win economic development opportunity and tax proposal for the people of Osceola County,” said Mike Earll, director of the OCEDC. “Not only will we have a new business for Osceola County, but it will also be a new source of revenue for the county paid almost exclusively by visitors and travelers using the hotel and living outside of Osceola County.”

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The project

The hotel will include a swimming pool and exercise area along with a meeting room and lounge area. It is anticipated that the hotel will employ 12 to 15 people with an annual payroll of $175,000. The project is being funded by 34 investors and local financing.
“Preliminary site work and excavation has been completed with construction to begin sometime in the April or May timeframe. Weather permitting, we fully anticipate that the hotel will be open for business sometime this fall,” Loren Bosma, spokesman and investor for JRJ, said.

Who pays the tax

If approved, the tax would be paid only by patrons of the hotel. Osceola County Auditor Barb Echter says the tax would not affect property taxes of residents in any way. The tax would create a way for the county to generate revenue from a new stream without increasing taxes on locals.

 

Where and when

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Rural residents of Osceola County are able to vote at one of eight voting precincts from noon to 8 p.m. Tuesday. Legal descriptions of each precinct and locations can be found below:

 

ASHTON PRECINCT
Commencing at the intersection of McKinley Avenue and 210th Street thence East to Red Wing Avenue, thence South to the McKinley Avenue thence North to 210th Street.
Ashton Legion Building, 321 Third St., Ashton, Iowa.

 

HARRIS PRECINCT
Commencing at the intersection of Van Buren Avenue and 100th Street thence South to 170th Street thence East to 100th Avenue thence North to 100th Street thence West to Van Buren Avenue.
Harris Community Center, 122 Main St., Harris, Iowa.

 

MAY CITY PRECINCT
Commencing at the intersection of Van Buren Avenue and 170th Street thence South to 270th Street thence East to 100th Avenue thence North to 170th Street thence West to Van Buren Avenue.
May City Fire Station, 6656 Frederick Ave., May City, Iowa.

 

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MELVIN PRECINCT
Commencing at the intersection of Red Wing Avenue and 210th Street thence South to 270th Street thence East to Van Buren Avenue thence North to 210th Street thence West to Red Wing Avenue.
Melvin Fire Station, 233 Main St., Melvin, Iowa.
OCHEYEDAN PRECINCT
Commencing at the intersection of Tyler Avenue and 100th Street thence South to 140th Street thence West to Silver Avenue thence South to 170th Street thence East to Van Buren Avenue thence North to 100th Street thence West to Tyler Avenue.
Ocheyedan Town Hall, 869 Main St., Ocheyedan, Iowa

 

OSCEOLA 1 PRECINCT
Commencing at the intersection of McKinley Avenue and 170th Street thence South to 210th Street thence East to Van Buren Avenue thence North to 170th Street thence West to Silver Avenue thence South to 180th Street thence West to Oriole Avenue thence North to the corporate limits to the City of Sibley thence continuing North on Ninth Avenue to Eighth Street thence West to Seventh Avenue thence North to Seventh Street thence West to Fifth Avenue thence North to Sixth Street thence West to Fourth Avenue thence North to Fourth Street thence West to the corporate limits thence following the corporate limits Southerly to Fifth Street thence continuing West on 170th Street to McKinley Avenue.
Osceola County Courthouse, 300 Seventh St., Sibley, Iowa

 

OSCEOLA 2 PRECINCT
Commencing at the intersection of Highway 60 and 100th Street thence continuing South to 120th Street thence East to Polk Avenue thence continuing South to 170th Street thence West to the corporate limits to the City of Sibley thence continuing West on Fifth Street to Ninth Avenue thence North to Fourth Street thence West to Eighth Avenue thence North to Third Street thence West to Sixth Avenue thence North to Second Street thence West to Fourth Avenue thence South to Eighth Street thence East to Ninth Avenue thence continuing South to 180th Street thence East to Silver Avenue thence North to 140th Street thence East to Tyler Avenue thence North to 100th Street thence West to Highway 60.
St. Andrews Catholic School, 722 Eighth Avenue, Sibley, Iowa

 

OSCEOLA 3 PRECINCT
Commencing at the intersection of Highway 60 and 100th Street thence continuing South to 120th Street thence East to Polk Avenue thence continuing South to 170th Street thence West to the corporate limits to the City of Sibley thence continuing West on Fifth Street to Ninth Avenue thence North to Fourth Street thence West to Eighth Avenue thence North to Third Street thence West to Sixth Avenue thence North to Second Street thence West to Fourth Avenue thence South to Fourth Street thence continuing West to the corporate limits thence following the corporate limit southerly to Fifth Street thence continuing West on 170th Street to McKinley Avenue thence North to 100th Street thence East to Highway 60.
United Methodist Church, 700 Eleventh Avenue, Sibley, Iowa.

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