What is the Ulster County Lodging Coalition?

UCLC is a member organization that promotes, protects and supports the business interests of the lodging industry in Ulster County. Membership is open to owners and managers of lodging properties in Ulster County. Associate membership is open to related businesses.

What is the mission of UCLC?

Our mission is to effectively communicate the critical role lodging-based hospitality businesses play in Ulster County’s economy and the widespread influence the industry has in providing economic stability for all Ulster County tourism related businesses.

Why was the Ulster County Lodging Coalition created?

In 2007 several lodging properties created the Ulster County Lodging Coalition to represent the interests of lodging properties in Ulster County. Initially the organization focused on opposing a proposed increase in the Ulster County occupancy, or bed tax, and gaining a voice in how bed tax dollars were used to promote tourism. The current 2% bed tax is now one of the lowest in New York State, and the Coalition has made great progress in developing positive relations with County government, working as partners with Ulster County Tourism.

How does Ulster County spend the bed tax?

According to the 1991 legislation creating the bed tax, the greatest of either 10% of the total bed tax money collected or $150,000 funds tourism. The remainder goes into the County general fund. In 2012, Ulster County collected $1,100,000 in occupancy taxes; the 2013 budget for Ulster County Tourism is $840,000. How many members are there? In 2013, UCLC had 70 members.

What does the Coalition do with dues?

UCLC collects dues to support the organization’s administrative costs, basically website maintenance and expenses associated with general membership meetings. The organization does not maintain an office or a staff. Dues are also used to fund contributions to political candidates who support lodging interests through the UCLC Political Action Committee. In 2008 and 2009, for example, about 90% of dues were used for this purpose. Dues are assessed annually.

How often does the Coalition meet?

The Executive Board meets quarterly. A business meeting for all members is held annually, usually in the fall. UCLC sponsors an annual general meeting, open to non-members as well, featuring presentations of interest to the lodging community.

How is the Board determined?

The by-laws identify the lodging properties that comprised the initial Board, and specify that the Board includes at least three members-at-large from lodging properties with 100 rooms or more. Currently Directors and Officers are elected at the annual business meeting, and serve one year terms.

What is the PAC?

In 2008, the Coalition created a Political Action Committee as the legal vehicle to contribute to political candidates who support lodging. Anita Peck is the current Treasurer. How does the Coalition determine which candidates to support? UCLC has invited candidates to meet with UCLC members, sponsored a debate, and solicited candidates’ positions on issues affecting tourism and lodging via a survey.