Some meetings in Provincetown are in person, some are online, and some are both. Click on the meeting you want to attend on the calendar at provincetown-ma.gov for a link to an agenda with details about the event.
Thursday, April 14
- Recycling & Renewable Energy Committee, 10 a.m., Veterans Memorial Community Center
- Public Pier Corp., 4 p.m.
- Planning Board, 6 p.m., Town Hall
Tuesday, April 19
- Conservation Commission, 6 p.m.
Wednesday, April 20
- Historic District Commission, 3:30 p.m., Town Hall
Thursday, April 21
- Board of Health, 4 p.m.
- Zoning Board of Appeals, 6 p.m., Town Hall
VSB Reflects on Town Meeting
“I don’t think this town has a tourism problem … I believe the problem in this town is the lack of funding for housing,” said David Panagore at town meeting on April 4. Voters were discussing whether they should reduce the share of rooms tax revenues going to the town’s tourism fund from 35 to 24 percent and direct a higher percentage to year-round and workforce housing.
The percentages going into the general fund, sewer fund, and capital stabilization fund were also reduced. But it was the tourism money that generated nearly an hour of debate, during which it became clear that voters wanted a higher percentage funneled to housing.
Jennifer Cabral proposed sending 18 percent to tourism and 42 percent to housing. Many endorsed her motion. But they were denied by Moderator Mary-Jo Avellar, who ruled it was improper to increase the allocation beyond what was stated in the warrant.
One voter, who identified as “a server, bartender, drag queen, and entertainer,” argued housing for working people would ultimately benefit tourism: “If you invest in your employees, the employees will be happy, and if they are happy the customers will be happy, and if customers are happy, they will come back to you again and again.”
Business owners now all advertise online, so why should the town spend so much on professional promotion, asked Jon Sinaiko.
As the town now brings in $4.7 million in rooms tax — nearly double what came in before the short-term rental tax was expanded in 2019 — the actual dollar amount going into tourism is still increasing, from $916,000 last year to $960,000 in the next fiscal year, said Town Manager Alex Morse.
Still, four of the seven members of the Visitors Service Board (VSB), which directs town tourism funds, voted not to recommend the reallocation. “We agree housing is the number one challenge in this town,” said Susan Avellar of the VSB. “However, we do not agree the solution lies in reducing the tourism funds.”
On April 12, the VSB met but did not linger over the town meeting decision. Tourism Director Tony Fuccillo told the board that social media page views were up over the previous year.
Avellar said the page view numbers should be brought to the select board, so people get a sense of the VSB’s successes — “so they won’t be in favor of taking this pot of money away.” —K.C. Myers