“Airbnb Bill” Heard in the House

MACo Executive Director Michael Sanderson testified on HB 1361, Hotel Rental Tax and Sales and Use Tax – Limited Residential Lodging, to the House Ways and Means Committee on March 9, 2016. MACo sought amendments to the complicated bill seeking to tax online hosting platforms – with the online company “Airbnb” taking center stage in the policy debate.

Overall, a statewide set of ground rules for online hosting platforms could create a clear and simple method for these platforms and their clients to comply with state and local tax laws. As long as the bill remains reasonable and doesn’t needlessly intrude into other local prerogatives, MACo sees such a model as welcome.

The bill’s sponsor and supporters have engaged with MACo and county governments, and MACo is optimistic that an amended bill could resolve several local concerns.

All discussion during the bill hearing pointed toward efforts to rewrite the original bill, perhaps completely, to accomplish the goals sought by the sponsor and supporters. “We’d be glad to be at the table for that,” said Mr. Sanderson.

An identical cross-filed bill, SB 776, will be heard on March 14 in the Senate.

For more on 2016 MACo legislation, visit the Legislative Database.