CHAPTER 112
Transient Room Tax

Section

General Tax Provisions

112.01    Title

112.02    Definitions

112.03    Registration of transient lodging tax collectors required

112.04    Tax imposed

112.05    Rules for collection

112.06    Duties of transient tax collector

112.07    Due date for returns and payment

112.08    Delinquencies and interest

112.09    Deficiency determinations

112.10    Redeterminations

112.11    Lien on property

112.12    Refunds

112.13    Exemptions

Administration and Enforcement

112.25    Distribution of taxes; fees

112.26    Appeals to City Council

112.27    Disposition of proceeds

112.28    Violations

112.99    Penalty

GENERAL TAX PROVISIONS

112.01 TITLE.

This chapter shall be known as the Transient Room Tax Ordinance.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91)

112.02 DEFINITIONS.

For the purpose of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply unless the context clearly indicates or requires a different meaning.

ACCRUAL ACCOUNTING. A system of accounting in which the operator enters the rent due from a transient on his records when the rent is earned, whether or not it is paid.

CASH ACCOUNTING. A system of accounting in which the operator does not enter the rent due from a transient on his records until the rent is paid.

COLLECTION REIMBURSEMENT CHARGE. The amount a transient lodging tax collector may retain as reimbursement for the costs incurred by the transient lodging tax collector in collecting and reporting a transient lodging tax and in maintaining transient lodging tax records.

COUNCIL. The City Council.

HOTEL. Any structure or any portion of any structure which is occupied or intended or designed for transient occupancy for 30 days or less, for dwelling, lodging or sleeping purposes, and includes any hotel, inn, tourist home or house, motel, studio hotel, bachelor hotel, lodging house, rooming house, apartment house, public or private dormitory, fraternity, sorority, public or private club, or similar structure, or portions thereof so occupied, provided the occupancy is for less than a 30-day period.

OCCUPANCY. The use or possession, or the right to use or possess lodging or sleeping purposes of any room or rooms in a hotel, or space in a mobile home or trailer park, or portion thereof.

OPERATOR. The person who is proprietor of a hotel or recreational vehicle park in any capacity. Where the OPERATOR performs his functions through a managing agent of any type or character other than an employee, the managing agent shall also be deemed an OPERATOR for the purposes of this chapter and shall have the same duties and liabilities as his principal. Compliance with the provisions of this chapter by either the principal or the managing agent shall be considered to be compliance by both.

PERSON. Any individual, firm, partnership, joint venture, association, social club, fraternal organization, fraternity, sorority, public or private dormitory, joint stock company, corporation, estate, trust, business trust, receiver, trustee, syndicate, or any other group or combination acting as a unit.

RECREATIONAL VEHICLE PARK. A mobile home park, manufactured dwelling park, recreational vehicle park or trailer park or similar location, or portions thereof, which is occupied or intended or designed for transient occupancy for 30 days or less for dwelling, lodging or sleeping purposes, provided the occupancy is for less than a 30-day period.

RENT. The consideration charged, whether or not received by the operator, for the occupancy of space in a hotel valued in money, goods, labor, credits, property, or other consideration valued in money, without any deduction.

RENT PACKAGE PLAN. The consideration charged for both food and rent where a single rate is made for the total of both. The amount applicable to rent for determination of transient room tax under this chapter shall be the same charge made for rent when consideration is not a part of a package plan.

TAX. Either the TAX payable by the transient, or the aggregate amount of TAXES due from an operator during the period for which he is required to report his collections.

TOURISM PROMOTION ASSESSMENT CHARGE. An increase in the local transient lodging taxes as herein adopted to fund tourism promotion of the facility known as the Eastern Oregon Trade and Event Center.

TRANSIENT. Any individual who exercises occupancy or is entitled to occupancy in a hotel for a period of 30 consecutive calendar days or less, counting portions of calendar days as full days. The day a TRANSIENT checks out of the hotel shall not be included in determining the 30-day period if the TRANSIENT is not charged rent for that day by the operator. Any individual so occupying space in a hotel shall be deemed to be a TRANSIENT until the period of 30 days has expired unless there is an agreement in writing between the operator and the occupant providing for a longer period of occupancy.

TRANSIENT LODGING.

(A)    Hotel, motel and inn dwelling units that are used for temporary overnight human occupancy;

(B)    Spaces used for parking recreational vehicles or erecting tents during periods of human occupancy; or

(C)    Houses, cabins, condominiums, apartment units or other dwelling units, or portions of any of these dwelling units, that are used for temporary human occupancy.

TRANSIENT LODGING INTERMEDIARY. A person other than a transient lodging provider that facilitates the retail sale of transient lodging and charges for occupancy of the transient lodging.

TRANSIENT LODGING PROVIDER. A person that furnishes transient lodging and includes OPERATOR.

TRANSIENT LODGING TAX COLLECTOR. A transient lodging provider or a transient lodging intermediary.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 1971, passed 10-12-98; Am. Ord. 2192, passed 7-23-12; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.03 REGISTRATION OF TRANSIENT LODGING TAX COLLECTORS REQUIRED.

(A)    Every person engaging or about to engage in business as a transient lodging provider or transient lodging intermediary shall register with the Finance Director/Recorder.

(B)    Transient lodging tax collectors engaged in business at the time this chapter is adopted must register not later than 30 calendar days after passage of this chapter. Transient lodging tax collectors starting business after this chapter is adopted must register within 15 calendar days after commencing business. The privilege of registration after the date of imposition of the tax shall not relieve any person from the obligation of payment or collection of tax regardless of registration.

(C)    Registration shall set forth the name under which a transient lodging tax collector transacts or intends to transact business, the location of the place or places of business and other information to facilitate the collection of the tax as the Finance Director/Recorder may require. The registration shall be signed by the transient lodging tax collector. The Finance Director/Recorder shall, within ten days after registration, issue without charge a certificate of authority to each registrant to collect the tax, together with a duplicate thereof for each additional place of business for each registrant.

(D)    Certificates shall be non-assignable and non-transferable and shall be surrendered immediately to the Finance Director/Recorder upon the cessation of business at the location named or upon its sale or transfer. Each certificate and duplicate shall state the place of business to which it is applicable and shall be prominently displayed therein so as to be seen and come to the notice readily of all occupants and persons seeking occupancy.

(E)    The certificate shall, among other things, state the following:

(1)    The name of the transient tax collector;

(2)    The address of the hotel or recreational vehicle park;

(3)    The due date upon which the certificate was issued;

(4)    This "Transient Occupancy Registration Certificate" signifies that the person named on the face hereof has fulfilled the requirements of the "Transient Room Tax Ordinance" of the city by registration with the Finance Director/Recorder for the purpose of collecting the tax imposed by the city and remitting the tax to the Finance Director/Recorder. This certificate does not authorize any person to conduct any unlawful business or to conduct any lawful business in an unlawful manner, or to operate a hotel or recreational vehicle park without strictly complying with all local applicable laws including but not limited to those requiring a permit from any board, council, department or office of the city. This certificate does not constitute a permit.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2192, passed 7-23-12; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.04 TAX IMPOSED.

(A)    On and after April 1, 2003, a tax in the amount of eight percent is imposed on the rent charged for the sale, service or furnishing of transient lodging defined in this chapter for each day of occupancy, provided, however, the occupancies rented for seven consecutive days to the same individual or party shall pay a rate of two and one-half percent of the rent charged per night of occupancy up to the 30-day limitation of this chapter.

(B)    On and after January 1, 2016, a tourism promotion assessment charge is imposed in the amount of $2 per one room night rented in any hotel, provided, however, the occupancies rented for seven consecutive days to the same individual or party also shall pay the tourism promotion assessment charge of $2 per night of occupancy up to the 30-day limitation of this chapter. This charge shall be reduced to $1 per room night rented as of January 1, 2031.

(C)    On and after January 1, 2016, a tourism promotion assessment charge is imposed in the amount of $1 per one space night rented in any recreational vehicle park, provided, however, the space occupancies rented for seven consecutive days to the same individual or party also shall pay a tourism promotion assessment charge of $1 per night of occupancy up to the 30-day limitation of this chapter.

(D)    The taxes and assessments imposed by subsections (A), (B) and (C) of this section constitute a debt owed by the transient to the city which is extinguished only by payment to the transient tax collector or to the city. The transient shall pay the taxes and assessments to the transient tax collector at the time the rent is paid. The transient tax collector shall enter the taxes and assessments on its records when rent is collected if the transient tax collector keeps its records on the cash accounting basis and when earned if the transient tax collector keeps its records on the accrual accounting basis.

(E)    If rent is paid in installments, a proportionate share of the tax and charges shall be paid by the transient to the transient tax collector with each installment. If for any reason the tax due is not paid to the transient tax collector, the Finance Director/Recorder may require that the tax shall be paid directly to the city. In all cases, the rent paid or charged for occupancy shall exclude the sale of any goods, services and commodities, other than the furnishing of rooms, accommodations, and parking space in mobile home parks or trailer parks.

(F)    Rates established herein shall not be increased for at least five years from January 1, 2016.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 1850, passed 8-8-94; Am. Ord. 2067, passed 1-27-03; Am. Ord. 2192, passed 7-23-12; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15; Am. Ord. 2236, passed 12-14-15)

112.05 RULES FOR COLLECTION.

(A)    Every transient tax collector shall collect the transient room tax and the tourism promotion assessment charge from the transient. The transient room tax and tourism promotion assessment charge collected or accrued by the transient tax collector shall be held in trust by the transient tax collector until such funds are remitted to the city as provided herein.

(B)    In all cases of credit or deferred payment of rent, the payment of tax to the transient tax collector may be deferred until the rent is paid, and the transient tax collector shall not be liable for the tax until credits are paid or deferred payments are made.

(C)    The Finance Director/Recorder shall enforce provisions of this chapter and shall have the power to adopt rules and regulations not inconsistent with this chapter as may be necessary to aid in the enforcement.

(D)    For rent collected on portions of a dollar, fractions of a penny of tax shall not be remitted.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2192, passed 7-23-12; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.06 DUTIES OF TRANSIENT TAX COLLECTOR.

Each transient tax collector shall collect the tax imposed by this chapter at the same time as the rent is collected from every transient. The amount of tax shall be separately stated upon the transient tax collector’s records, and any receipt rendered by the transient tax collector. No transient tax collector shall advertise that the tax or any part of the tax will be assumed or absorbed by the transient tax collector, or that it will not be added to the rent, or that, when added, any part will be refunded, except in the manner provided by this chapter.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15) Penalty, see § 112.99

112.07 DUE DATE FOR RETURNS AND PAYMENT.

(A)    The tax imposed by this chapter shall be paid by the transient to the transient tax collector at the time that rent is paid. All amounts of the taxes collected by any transient tax collector accrue and are payable to the Finance Director/Recorder on a quarterly basis. The taxes accrue on the last day of the quarter and are delinquent 30 days thereafter.

(B)    On or before the thirtieth day following each quarter when the amount of funds held by a transient tax collector equals or exceeds $100, a return for that quarter’s transient room tax and tourism promotion assessment charge shall be filed with the Finance Director/Recorder. The return shall be filed in the form as the Finance Director/Recorder may prescribe by every transient tax collector liable for payment to the city of the transient room tax and the tourism promotion assessment charge.

(C)    Returns shall show the amount of tax collected or otherwise due for the related period. The Finance Director/Recorder may require returns to show the total rentals upon which tax was collected or otherwise due, and an explanation in detail of any discrepancy between reported rentals and amounts tendered, the amount of rents exempt, if any, and description of units rented for periods of seven consecutive days, or for more than 30 days.

(D)    The transient tax collector required to file the return shall deliver the return, together with the remittance of the amount of tax due, to the Finance Director/Recorder at City Hall either by personal delivery or by mail. If the return is mailed, the postmark shall be considered the date of delivery for determining delinquencies.

(E)    For good cause, the Finance Director/Recorder may extend, but not to exceed one month, the time for making any return or payment of tax. No further extension shall be granted, except by action of the City Council as provided herein. Any transient tax collector to whom an extension is granted shall pay interest at the rate of one percent per month on the amount of tax due without proration for a fraction of a month. If a return is not filed, and the tax and interest due is not paid by the end of the extension granted, then the interest shall become a part of the tax for computation of penalties described elsewhere in this chapter.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2192, passed 7-23-12; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.08 DELINQUENCIES AND INTEREST.

(A)    Original delinquency. Any transient tax collector who has not been granted an extension of time for remittance of tax due and who fails to remit any tax imposed by this chapter prior to delinquency shall pay a penalty of ten percent of the amount of the tax due in addition to the amount of the tax.

(B)    Continued delinquency. Any transient tax collector who has not been granted an extension of time for remittance of tax due, and who failed to pay any delinquent remittance on or before a period of 30 days following the date on which the remittance first became delinquent, shall pay a second delinquency penalty of 15% of the amount of tax due plus the amount of the tax and the ten percent penalty first imposed.

(C)    Fraud. If the Finance Director/Recorder determines that the nonpayment of any remittance due under this chapter is due to fraud or intent to evade the provisions thereof, a penalty of 25% of the amount of the tax shall be added thereto in addition to the penalties stated in subsections (A) and (B) of this section.

(D)    Interest. In addition to the penalties imposed, any transient tax collector who fails to remit any tax imposed by this chapter shall pay interest at the rate of one-half percent per month or fraction thereof without proration for portions of a month on the amount of the tax due, exclusive of penalties, from the date on which the remittance first became delinquent until paid.

(E)    Penalties merged with tax. Every penalty imposed and the interest as accrues under the provisions of this section shall be merged with and become a part of the tax herein required to be paid.

(F)    Petition for waiver. Any transient tax collector who fails to remit the tax levied within the time stated shall pay the penalties; provided, however, the transient tax collector may petition the City Council for waiver and refund of the penalty or any portion thereof, and the Council may, if a good and sufficient reason is shown, waive and direct a refund of the penalty or any portion thereof.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.09 DEFICIENCY DETERMINATIONS.

(A)    Deficiency determination. If the Finance Director/Recorder determines that the returns are incorrect, he may compute and determine the amount required to be paid upon the basis of the facts contained in the return or returns or upon the basis of any information within his possession or that may come into his possession. One or more deficiency determinations may be made of the amount due for one, or more than one, period and the amount so determined shall be due and payable immediately upon service of notice as herein provided after which the amount determined is delinquent. Penalties on deficiencies shall be applied as set forth in § 112.08.

(1)    In making a determination the Finance Director/Recorder may offset overpayment, if any, which may have been previously made for a period or periods, against any underpayment for a subsequent period or periods, or against penalties, and interest, on the underpayment. The interest on underpayment shall be computed in the manner set forth in § 112.08.

(2)    The Finance Director/Recorder shall give to the transient tax collector or transient a written determination notice. The notice may be served personally or by mail; if by mail, the notice shall be addressed to the transient tax collector’s address as it appears in the records of the Finance Director/Recorder. In case of service by mail or any notice required by this chapter the service is complete at the time of deposit in the United States Post Office.

(3)    Except in the case of fraud, intent to evade this chapter or authorized rules and regulations, every deficiency determination shall be made and notice thereof mailed within three years after the last day of the month following the close of the monthly period for which the amount is proposed to be determined or within three years after the return is filed, whichever period expires the later.

(4)    Any determination shall become due and payable immediately upon receipt of notice and shall become final within ten days after the Finance Director/Recorder has given notice thereof, provided, however, the transient tax collector may petition redemption and refund if the petition is filed before the determination becomes final as herein provided.

(B)    Fraud, refusal to collect, evasion. If any transient tax collector shall fail or refuse to collect the tax or to make, within the time provided in this chapter, any report and remittance of the tax or any portion thereof required by this chapter, or makes a fraudulent return or otherwise willfully attempts to evade this chapter, the Finance Director/Recorder shall proceed in the manner he may deem best to obtain facts and information on which to base an estimate of the tax due. As soon as the Finance Director/Recorder has determined the tax due that is imposed by this chapter from any transient tax collector who has failed or refused to collect the same and to report and remit the tax, he or she shall proceed to determine and assess against the transient tax collector the tax, interest, and penalties provided for by this chapter. In case a determination is made, the Finance Director/Recorder shall give a notice in the manner aforesaid of the amount so assessed. The determination and notice shall be made and mailed within three years after discovery by the Finance Director/Recorder of any fraud, intent to evade or failure or refusal to collect the tax, or failure to file return. Any determination shall become due and payable immediately upon receipt of notice and shall become final within ten days after the Finance Director/Recorder has given notice thereof, provided, however, the transient tax collector may petition redemption and refund if the petition is filed before the determination becomes final as herein provided.

(C)    Transient tax collector delay. If the Finance Director/Recorder believes that the collection of any tax or any amount of tax required to be collected and paid to the city will be jeopardized by delay, or if any determination will be jeopardized by delay, he or she shall thereupon make a determination of the tax or amount of tax required to be collected, noting the fact upon the determination. The amount so determined as herein provided shall be immediately due and payable, and the transient tax collector shall immediately pay same determination to the Finance Director/Recorder after service of notice thereof; provided, however, the transient tax collector may petition, after payment has been made, for redemption and refund of determination, if the petition is filed within ten days from the date of service of notice by the Finance Director/Recorder.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.10 REDETERMINATIONS.

(A)    Any person against whom a determination is made under § 112.09 or any person directly interested may petition for a redetermination and redemption and refund within the time required in § 112.09. If a petition for redetermination and refund is not filed within the time required in § 112.09, the determination becomes final at the expiration of the allowable time.

(B)    If a petition for redetermination and refund is filed within the allowable period, the Finance Director/Recorder shall reconsider the determination and, if the person has so requested in his petition, shall grant the person an oral hearing and shall give him ten days’ notice of the time and place of the hearing. The Finance Director/Recorder may continue the hearing from time to time as may be necessary.

(C)    The Finance Director/Recorder may decrease or increase the amount of the determination as a result of the hearing and if any increase is determined the increase shall be payable immediately after the hearing.

(D)    The order or decision of the Finance Director/Recorder upon a petition for redetermination of redemption and refund becomes final ten days after service upon the petitioner of notice thereof, unless appeal of the order or decision is filed with the Council within the ten days after service of the notice.

(E)    No petition for redetermination of redemption and refund or appeal therefrom shall be effective for any purpose unless the transient tax collector has first complied with the payment provisions hereof.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.11 LIEN ON PROPERTY.

(A)    The tax imposed by this chapter together with the interest and penalties herein provided and the filing fees paid to the Clerk of Umatilla County, the advertising costs which may be incurred when same becomes delinquent as set forth in this chapter shall be and, until paid, remain a lien from the date of its recording with the Clerk of Umatilla County, Oregon. The lien shall be superior to all subsequently recorded liens on all tangible personal property used in the hotel of a transient tax collector within Hermiston and may be foreclosed on and the necessary property sold to discharge the lien, if the lien has been recorded.

(B)    Personal property subject to the lien may be foreclosed in the same manner as a nonpossessory chattel lien for labor or material expended on chattel in ORS Chapter 87. When the Finance Director/Recorder files a notice of claim of lien with the County Recorder, the Finance Director/Recorder or deputy shall send forthwith a copy of the notice to the transient tax collector and the owner of the chattel (if different from the transient tax collector) by certified mail at their last known address.

(C)    At any time within three years after any tax or any amount of tax required to be collected becomes due and payable, or at any time within three years after any determination becomes final, the Finance Director/Recorder may bring an action in the courts of this state, or any other state, or of the United States, in the name of the city, to collect the amount delinquent, together with penalties and interest.

(D)    In suits to foreclose the lien the court shall, upon entering judgment, allow as part of the lien the moneys paid for the filing or recording of the lien. The court shall also allow reasonable attorney fees at trial and on appeal to the prevailing party.

(E)    Any lien for taxes as shown on the records of the proper county official shall, upon the payment of all taxes, penalties, and interest thereon, be released by the Finance Director/Recorder when the full amount determined to be due has been paid to the city and the transient tax collector or person making the payment shall receive a receipt therefor stating that the full amount of taxes, penalties, and interest thereon have been paid and that the lien is thereby released and the record of lien is satisfied.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2162, passed 10-26-09; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.12 REFUNDS.

(A)    Transient tax collector’s refunds. Whenever the amount of any tax, penalty, or interest has been paid more than once or has been erroneously or illegally collected or received by the Finance Director/Recorder under this chapter, it may be refunded, provided a verified claim in writing therefor, stating the specific reason upon which the claim is founded, is filed with the Finance Director/Recorder within three years from the date of payment. The claim shall be made on forms provided by the Finance Director/ Recorder. If the claim is approved by the Finance Director/Recorder, the excess amount collected or paid may be refunded or may be credited on any amounts then due and payable from the transient tax collector from whom it was collected or by whom paid and the balance may be refunded to each transient tax collector, his or her administrators, executors or assignees.

(B)    Transient refunds. Whenever the tax required by this chapter has been collected by the transient tax collector, and deposited by the transient tax collector with the Finance Director/Recorder, and it is later determined that the tax was erroneously or illegally collected or received by the Finance Director/Recorder, it may be refunded by the Finance Director/Recorder to the transient, provided a verified claim in writing therefor, stating the specific reason on which the claim is founded, is filed with the Finance Director/ Recorder within three years from the date of payment.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.13 EXEMPTIONS.

(A)    No tax imposed under this chapter shall be imposed upon:

(1)    Any occupant for more than 30 successive calendar days. (A person who pays for lodging on a monthly basis, irrespective of the number of days in the month, shall not be deemed a transient.)

(2)    Any occupant whose rent is of a value less than $3 per day.

(3)    Any person who rents a private house, vacation cabin, or like facility from any owner who rents the facilities incidentally to his own use thereof.

(4)    Any occupant whose rent is paid for a hospital room or to a medical clinic, convalescent home or home for aged people, to a public institution owned and operated by a unit of government, to a shelter home, halfway house or other rehabilitation facility.

(5)    Federal employees and employees of federal instrumentalities (i.e., American Red Cross) on official business. (A member or employee of a nonprofit organization and employees of state and local governments of Oregon or any other state are required to pay any tax imposed under this chapter.)

(6)    Persons with diplomatic immunity.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2244, passed 3-20-17)

ADMINISTRATION AND ENFORCEMENT

112.25 DISTRIBUTION OF TAXES; FEES.

(A)    Distribution.

(1)    The taxes imposed by § 112.04(A) and remitted to the city, less five percent retained by the transient tax collector, shall be distributed as follows:

(a)    Twenty-five percent to improve, maintain and operate the Hermiston Community Center and the Eastern Oregon Trade and Event Center;

(b)    Nine percent for recreation and recreation-related programs and activities and park improvements administered by the advisory committee pursuant to § 112.27(B);

(c)    Fifteen percent to offset costs of programs such as the senior citizen taxi program, economic development, streets maintenance and similar programs funded from the general fund;

(d)    Nine percent for city parks and recreation development administered by the Parks and Recreation Committee pursuant to § 112.27(D). The proceeds of the tax for parks and recreation development shall accumulate in a reserve account and may not be diverted or utilized in any other manner;

(e)    One and one-half percent for preventative maintenance and/or repairs to a community outdoor swimming pool;

(f)    Thirty-seven and one-half percent for the cost of constructing a community outdoor swimming pool, including the retirement of any bonds issued for its construction; and

(g)    Three percent for the cost of operating a visitor’s information center within the City of Hermiston.

(2)    Fifty percent of the funds collected from the tourism promotion assessment charge imposed by §§ 112.04(B) and (C) and remitted to the city, less seven percent retained by the transient tax collector, are dedicated to and shall be transferred promptly to the Eastern Oregon Trade and Event Center Authority to fund tourism promotion by it of the Eastern Oregon Trade and Event Center until January 1, 2031, when this percentage shall be 100% again.

(3)    Fifty percent of the funds collected from the tourism promotion assessment charge imposed by §§ 112.04(B) and (C) and remitted to the city, less seven percent retained by the transient lodging tax collector, shall be used to offset the cost of constructing the Eastern Oregon Trade and Event Center, including the retirement of any bonds issued for its construction until January 1, 2031, when this provision shall lapse.

(B)    Records required from transient tax collectors; forms. Every transient tax collector shall keep guest records of room and space sales and accounting books and records of room and space sales. All records shall be retained by the transient tax collector for a period of three years and six months after they come into being.

(C)    Collection fee. Every transient tax collector liable for collection and remittance of the transient room tax imposed by this chapter may withhold five percent of the net tax and every transient tax collector liable for collection and remittance of the tourism promotion assessment charge imposed by this chapter may withhold seven percent of the net tax herein collected to cover the transient tax collector’s expenses in collection and remittance of the tax and charge.

(D)    Examination of records; investigations. The Finance Director/Recorder or any person authorized in writing by him or her may examine during normal business hours the books, papers, and accounting records relating to room sales of any transient tax collector after notification to the transient tax collector liable for the tax and may investigate the business of the transient tax collector in order to verify the accuracy of any return made or, if no return is made by the transient tax collector, to ascertain and determine the amount required to be paid.

(E)    Confidential character of information obtained; disclosure unlawful. It shall be unlawful for the Finance Director/Recorder or any person having an administrative or clerical duty under the provisions of this chapter to make known in any manner whatever the business affairs, operations, or information obtained by an investigation of records and equipment of any person required to obtain a transient occupancy registration certificate, or pay a transient occupancy tax, or any other person visited or examined in the discharge of official duty, or the amount or source of income, profits, losses, expenditures, or any particular thereof, set forth in any statement or application, or to permit any statement or application, or copy of either, or any book containing any abstract or particulars thereof to be seen or examined by any person. Provided that nothing in this subsection shall be construed to prevent:

(1)    The disclosure to, or the examination of, records and equipment by another city official, employee, or agent for collection of taxes for the sole purpose of administering or enforcing any provisions of this chapter; or collecting taxes imposed hereunder.

(2)    The disclosure after the filing of a written request to that effect, to the taxpayer, receivers, trustees, executors, administrators, assignees, and guarantors, if directly interested, of information as to any paid tax, any unpaid tax or amount of tax required to be collected, or interest, and penalties; further provided, however, that the City Attorney approves each disclosure and that the Finance Director/Recorder may refuse to make any disclosure referred to in this subsection (E) when in his opinion the public interest would suffer thereby.

(3)    The disclosure of the names and addresses of any persons to whom transient occupancy registration certificates have been issued.

(4)    The disclosure of general statistics regarding taxes collected or business done in the city.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 1766, passed 5-11-92; Am. Ord. 1850, passed 8-8-94; Am. Ord. 2056, passed 6-10-02; Am. Ord. 2067, passed 1-27-03; Am. Ord. 2192, passed 7-23-12; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15; Am. Ord. 2236, passed 12-14-15; Am. Ord. 2240, passed 4-25-16; Am. Ord. 2252, passed 11-13-17)

112.26 APPEALS TO CITY COUNCIL.

(A)    Any dispute in the amount of taxes due, refunds, or other provisions of this chapter may be filed with the Finance Director/Recorder. If not satisfied by the Finance Director/Recorder, the transient tax collector may appeal the decision of the Finance Director/Recorder to the City Manager, and if not satisfied by the Manager, to the City Council.

(B)    The Council, acting as the review authority for disputes, may:

(1)    Hear and determine appeals of decisions of the personnel of the city, prescribe the forms, rules and regulations relating to appeals, and take other actions consistent with the appeal function. In reviewing a decision or dispute, the Council may take evidence and make an investigation. The Council shall give notice of determinations and shall file a certified copy of each determination with the Finance Director/Recorder. A determination of the Council becomes final after 20 days and becomes due, subject to interest and penalties, and enforceable by the city in the same manner as an order or decision of the Finance Director/Recorder as described herein.

(2)    Approve, modify or disapprove all forms, rules and regulations prescribed by the Finance Director/Recorder if the forms, rules and regulations are challenged in the administration and enforcement of this chapter.

(3)    Hear and determine protests made to a form, rule or regulation approved or prescribed by the Finance Director/Recorder.

(4)    Prescribe rules for extensions and, for good cause, grant extensions of time in excess of one month for filing a return or paying the tax.

(5)    Make investigations regarding imposition and administration of the tax and report findings publicly; assist in directing enforcement actions; and determine the necessity to amend or alter this chapter.

(6)    Any other duties not specifically enumerated herein which are consistent with this chapter.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15)

112.27 DISPOSITION OF PROCEEDS.

(A)    The city shall receipt for the proceeds of the tax in the "Transient Room Tax Fund."

(B)    The Council shall appoint an advisory committee consisting of a motel operator, a member of the Parks and Recreation Committee, a representative of the Chamber of Commerce, a member of the Council and one citizen at large not affiliated with any of the organizations potentially funded through the proceeds of the tax, to consider potential projects eligible for funding from the portion of the tax designated for recreation and recreation-related programs and activities and park improvements in § 112.25(A)(1)(b). Committee members shall be appointed in accord with the charter of the city and rules of the Council.

(C)    Advisory committee members will be appointed for three-year staggered terms, and may be any individual dwelling within the boundaries of Hermiston School District 8R. The type of projects, method of administration, and similar matters shall be established by the Committee, with the advice and consent of the City Council. The Committee shall recommend annual appropriations to the City Manager and the Council. The proceeds accounted in this fund may not be expended for any project until the Committee and the Council have agreed on the project and the amounts to be expended. Should the Committee and the Council fail to agree, the proceeds of the tax shall continue to accumulate in this account and may not be diverted or utilized in any other manner.

(D)    Pursuant to § 112.25(A)(1)(d), the Parks and Recreation Committee shall act as the advisory committee for parks and recreation development. The Parks and Recreation Committee shall recommend types of projects to be funded to the City Manager and Council. The proceeds accounted in this fund may not be expended for any project until the Parks and Recreation Committee and Council have agreed on the project and the amount to be expended. Should the Parks and Recreation Committee and the Council fail to agree, the proceeds of the tax for parks and recreation development shall continue to accumulate in this account and may not be diverted or utilized in any other matter.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 1766, passed 5-11-92; Am. Ord. 1850, passed 8-8-94; Am. Ord. 2056, passed 6-10-02; Am. Ord. 2192, passed 7-23-12)

112.28 VIOLATIONS.

It is unlawful for any transient tax collector or other person so required to fail or refuse to register as required herein, or to furnish any return required to be made, or fail or refuse to furnish a supplemental return or other data required by the Finance Director/Recorder or to render a false or fraudulent return. No person required to make, render, sign, or verify any report shall make any false or fraudulent report, with intent to defeat or evade the determination of any amount due required by this chapter.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 2232, passed 7-27-15) Penalty, see § 112.99

112.99 PENALTY.

Anyone who fails to register pursuant to this chapter commits a Class A violation for each continuing day of violation, and in addition is subject to the penalties assessed for non-payment as set forth in this chapter.

(Ord. 1719, passed 3-11-91; Am. Ord. 1976, passed 10-26-98)