I'm sure if 40 years ago you had approached a municipal politician about their city being in the hotel business- that polly probably would have given you a look like you'd taken leave of your senses...
Here in 2011- it seems to be the thing for cash-strapped cities to do.
The City of Kansas City MO subsidizes several Downtown hotels with taxpayer dollars (PLEASE continue that Earnings Tax!) and wants to put city (and other) taxpayers on the hook for an already-obsolete (idea) 1000-room convention hotel.
The City of Cedar Rapids just paid $3.2-million for an abandoned downtown hotel according to the CEDAR RAPIDS (IA) GAZETTE- and the city will spend upwards of $25-million of city (taxpayer) monies to remodel it.
Gee- Cedar Rapids sure recovered fast from that devastating flood in 2008!