Applying for Lodgers Tax

policies & procedures

Procedure for Application, Use and Reimbursement for City of Elephant Butte Lodger’s Tax Funds

FY 16-17 Application for Lodgers Tax Funds



The City Council of the City of Elephant Butte has contracted a professional advertising firm for all City and City related promotions and marketing. A new policy has been created to maximize promotions and marketing based upon an adopted Marketing Plan. Approved Lodgers Tax funding will be used for the proposed event, through the City advertising firm. This process will allow the City to request matching Tourism Department Cooperative Advertising funds, and double the exposure for the City and events.

Some proposed events that are specialty in nature may need to be marketed to a targeted audience. The applicant will have the option to list specialty markets that should be targeted, or the applicant can utilize 50% of the authorized funding to go toward the specialty market they place themselves and the remaining 50% will be spent by the City.

The City of Elephant Butte understands the importance of bringing in visitors from out of the area, and would like to encourage applicants to market outside Sierra County. Therefore 70% of awarded Lodgers Tax grants must be spent on advertising more than 75 miles from Elephant Butte. Special considerations will be made for the following:

a. Tee shirts printed and purchased in the area, but distributed or sold for participants or attendees to take out of the area, will be an outside area allowable expense.

b. A portion of the two local papers are distributed outside the area, therefore 10% of the total amount spent in the local papers will be considered out of area.

d. The Chaparral produced by The Herald, or any publications similar that have out of market distribution will be considered an out of area allowable expense.

NOTE: Advertisement on local area radio stations, does not reach “outside the area”, therefore is not an allowable out of area expense.

The Lodgers Tax Board will evaluate all applications and make recommendations for funding to the City Council. The City Council will have final say on how the Lodger’ tax dollars will be allocated.

The City Council has allocated 10% of the funding available for the Lodgers Tax Advertising Budget to be for “new” events. A new event is defined as an event that benefits Elephant Butte which has never been funded before through Elephant Butte Lodgers Tax funds in the past.


1. Any Organization must submit an Application for Lodger Tax Funds NO LATER THAN APRIL 1 of each year for funding for the upcoming fiscal year. The Lodger’s Tax Board will review the application to verify that the request is in compliance with New Mexico State Statutes, and City Ordinances and Policies. Non-Profit Organizations must submit their non-profit EIN number with the application.

  1. Any new, never funded events can submit at any time throughout the year and be considered for funding at the next Lodgers Tax Board meeting. The deadline to place an item on the next agenda is January 1, April 1, July 1 and October 1.
    1. All applications must contain all information required to be considered:
      1. DESCRIPTION: The event must have a complete description to include the target audience, the time and hours of the event, if outside sales will be allowed, how much of the event will be inside Elephant Butte city limits, if liquor will be involved, how many attendees from out of the area have historically been or estimated to be here, and any other information that will clearly define the event.
      2. BENEFIT REPORT: All applications shall require a report explaining how the event will benefit the City of Elephant Butte. This shall be provided with quantitative data as to the return of investment received from Lodger’s Tax funds. If this is a new event, then provide projected data.
      3. ADVERTISING BUDGET: All applications shall include all advertising proposed, including locations, media and amounts proposed to each. All applications will include the amount of funds requested and/ or received from any other lodger’s tax boards. If applicant wishes to promote event/City in a specialty media, they must determine if they want the City to provide this, or if the applicant wishes to do this themselves.

4. If the City Council agrees with the recommendation, a contract will be signed between the City of Elephant Butte and the Contractor. If the Contractor wishes to perform a portion of their own advertising, they must attest that: No less than seventy percent (70%) must be spent OUTSIDE (more than 75 miles from Elephant Butte) of Sierra County. In-County funds will be distributed at the same time or after the requests for out of county funds are paid.

For reimbursement, the Contractor will present the following:

a A copy of paid invoices needs to be submitted with the request for reimbursement. All ordering and purchasing of advertising MUST be in the name of the Contractor. Seventy percent (70%) of the advertising funds allocated to an organization must be spent OUTSIDE Sierra County.

b. The organization will submit a sample of the advertising purchased. The ad must include the words “Paid for by City of Elephant Butte Lodgers Tax Funds”

c. A copy of the bank cleared check, front and back, used to pay for each invoice needs to be included with each invoice submitted.

d. Please note that requests for reimbursement must be submitted no later than 90 days after the event. Any funds not reimbursed after 90 days will revert back to the Lodger Tax Fund.

e. When all required documentation is submitted, it will be reviewed to verify that they are in compliance with the Lodger’s Tax Policies, the contract and all applicable state statutes.

f. If documentation is not correct, or does not meet the requirements set forth in the contract, the City may reimburse Contractor partial funds.

g. Reimbursement will then be made at the City’s next regular check run.

5. If there are disputes between the Contractor and the City regarding reimbursement, the City Manager will determine if all policies and procedures are upheld. Contractor may appeal the Manager’s decision to the City Council.

6. The City will make every attempt to give notice of application deadlines to any previous recipients, place an ad in the local newspapers and post applications and rules on the City of Elephant Butte web site.