Cache County Restaurant, RAPZ Tax Fund Looks Healthy Despite Pandemic

May 21, 2021

Credit https://utahfestival.org/

In Cache County, the RAPZ and Restaurant Tax is a 0.1% sales tax that is used to support things like community arts and recreation. While the pandemic had many negative financial consequences,  since people kept supporting local restaurants the fund didn’t suffer. 

Applications for grants from Cache County’s RAPZ and Restaurant tax fund will be reviewed on Tuesday during the County Council meeting and Wendi Hassan, the Executive Director of Cache Valley Center for the Arts, said she is hopeful. 

 

“We anticipated a difference (in the fund) because of course it’s funded by sales tax,” Hussan said. “So we were anticipating that it would go down but surprisingly it actually was maybe a little bit better than usual. I think people stayed home and shopped at home a little more than usual and that ended up benefiting a community like Logan where people tend to travel out and seek adventures elsewhere.” 

 

Hassan said the RAPZ tax is one of the few taxes collected on a county level, which means everybody pays into it and benefits from it as well. The money gathered from the tax supports, parks and recreational activities like the arts or the zoo. 

  

Although the pandemic meant restaurants around the country shut down, Cache Valley still saw a 2% growth in restaurant taxes, compared to the 8% growth that is usually seen. Cache County Executive David Zook said the lack of stringent shutdown guidelines in Utah is why he believes the fund still did well.

 

“Our government agencies here from the state to the county to the cities, I don’t think they overstepped their authority as much as what happened in other parts of the country where things were really shut down,” Zook said.  “We never really shut down here as much as other places and I think that made a difference in helping our restaurants survive.” 

 

Grant applications for the money will be reviewed on Tuesday and recommendations from a committee of citizens and elected officials will approve them.