Will Joyce’s Peanuts Cost More Too?

June 29, 2010

The Village of Brookfield is struggling financially and it’s looking to Brookfield Zoo and its visitors to help out.

Zoo officials are worried that an amusement tax will negatively affect admissions. A personal agenda: This is Joyce, Brookfield Zoo's only elephant. She desperately needs a friend. Elephants shouldn't be alone.

Village officials have proposed implementing an amusement tax that would raise prices on food, beverages, admission, memberships and rental rates at one of Illinois’ top tourist attractions.

The proposed tax, which would affect all of Brookfield, was on the agenda to be discussed at a Village board meeting on Monday. About 200 people showed up, most opposed to the tax, and Village officials must have panicked because they took the issue off the table at the last minute and refused to discuss it.

Officials believe the amusement tax could generate $500,000 or more a year for the Village. It would affect all amusement businesses and live entertainment, including sporting events at Riverside Brookfield High School.

The food and beverage tax would apply to any place with seating. A hotel tax is also being considered.

That should make people want to visit Brookfield.

Officials have also suggested a utility tax and increases in garbage and business license fees.

Brookfield Zoo, which opened in 1934, provides 2,000 jobs and generates more than $150 million in economic activity each year for Brookfield.

Categories: Cook County, Economy

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