Services Departments Government

From: Tim Heider, Clackamas County Public Affairs Manager, 503-742-5911

06-15-17

Clackamas County

Media and Interested Parties

Short-term private home rentals to pay county’s 6% Transient Lodging Tax

Clackamas County Commissioners today approved an amendment to the Clackamas County Code that requires short-term lodging services to pay the county’s 6 percent Transient Lodging Tax. 

The tax has existed in Clackamas County since 1980. Hotels, motels, inns, bed-and-breakfasts, and other lodging businesses were previously (and continue to be) subject to the tax. 

Lodging taxes collected by the county are dedicated to the promotion and development of tourism and visitor programs for the county. Funds go to the Clackamas County Tourism & Cultural Affairs Department, operating as Oregon’s Mt. Hood Territory, plus a set amount goes to the County Fair Board.

Recent updates to the County Code means that the tax, previously the Transient Room Tax, has expanded its scope to include online services acting as conduits for homeowners to rent properties for several days to private parties. The revised amendments now also clarify the inclusion of recreational vehicles and campgrounds. 

The primary purpose of the Code changes is to collect the tax revenues from online service providers such as AirBnB, HomeAway, Vacasa, VRBO, and any other third-party lodging companies.

Many of these services have emerged over the past several years and were not contemplated by the Code.

The tax applies to the rent collected from private parties whose stay is up to 30 days in length (the tax does not apply for longer duration stays). Additional exemptions to the tax include:

The public can review the draft changes at http://www.clackamas.us/bcc/documents/businesspackets/bcc20170615_3.pdf.

 Online service providers now subject to the tax have 30 days – until July 15 – to register with Clackamas County. This can be done online on the Finance Department’s website at http://www.clackamas.us/finance/transient.html by filling out the proper form. Transient lodging services that begin operations within the county after today are required to fill out the form within 15 days of starting.  

The code specifies penalties for delinquencies, continued delinquencies, and fraud for those intermediaries who do not pay the tax.

Clackamas County is not alone in addressing issues surrounding the collection of lodging taxes with these private home rental companies operating in the “sharing economy.” Municipalities across the nation and Oregon have been updating their relevant lodging taxes to include these short-term lodging services during the past several years.

By increasing the number of visitors to the county, Mt. Hood Territory contributes to local economic development.

Today’s action was the second reading of the changes to the ordinance. The first reading occurred at the April 13 Business Meeting.

For more information, members of the media and public may contact Public Affairs Manager Tim Heider at 503-742-5911 or theider@clackamas.us.

 

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