There were serious accusations that the Orange County Tourism Development Tax Task Force, a group recommending the way we spend your money collected from hotel night stays, had been compromised into favoring certain projects, specifically the Orange County Convention Center. (story HERE).
Today, we learned that those accusations appeared to be true. This whole task force was a joke. A photo opp board of special interest appointees concerned with taking your money for themselves.
All of the projects that had insider connections at the county government level were approved. Besides the convention center, this included more money for Camping World Stadium, the Amway Center, and UCF Sports. All which will use the funds from these recommendations to increase their profit margins and ensure none of that money goes back to you (story HERE).
The smaller projects that would have enriched the community outside of our tourism funnel were given lower ratings. The only exception being a Major League Baseball Stadium which was a ridiculous $1 Billion dollar ask for a team that might not even be available (story HERE).
They even punched down on the smaller groups, refusing to even have the county offer help on how to make their projects better.
And then this task force of insiders tried to quit early by eliminating a conversation about diversification of TDT. The real solution for Orlando residents.
Many members of this board were both corrupt and lazy. They probably won’t even show up to the next meeting.
Which is why we need to ask the Orange County Commission, the board of elected officials with the final say over how these funds are spent, to throw out the task force’s recommendations completely. They can have their own conversations with their own constituents.
This task force was a joke that failed Orange County.