Hoping to extract back taxes from the La Quinta Inn, the city of Orange has filed suit against the motel and its owner.

The suit was filed April 12 in Orange County District Court. Manpreet Singh, owner of the La Quinta located off Interstate 10 in Orange, was also named as a defendant.

In its suit, the city alleges the motel is delinquent in its payment of the hotel occupancy tax � better known as the hotel/motel tax or HOT tax.

The tax is imposed on all hotels by the city according to Article 1.6 of its Code of Ordinances. Under state law, the revenue from the HOT tax may be used only to directly promote tourism and the convention and hotel industry.

The city alleges the La Quinta has not paid the tax since November 2009 and owes $16,483.

The city is also suing for $2,472.45 in penalty interest and $4,000 in attorney's fees.

Furthermore, the city is seeking a temporary injunction to stop the motel from doing business until it remedies the delinquent account.

A hearing has been set for May 13.

The city is represented by attorney Christopher Smith of the Bush Lewis law firm.

Judge Buddy Hahn, 260th Judicial District, has been assigned to the case.

Case No. D100165-c

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