Chapter 4.16
LODGING FACILITIES EXCISE TAX Revised 3/18 Revised 6/18

Sections:

4.16.010    Imposition of Special Excise Tax. Revised 6/18

4.16.020    Definitions.

4.16.030    Administration – Collection.

4.16.040    Credit.

4.16.050    Taxes Imposed are Additional.

4.16.060    Payment of Taxes – Deduction.

4.16.070    Violations.

4.16.080    Establishment of a Special Fund. Revised 3/18

4.16.090    Effective Date of Tax.

4.16.100    Severability.

4.16.010 Imposition of Special Excise Tax. Revised 6/18

A.    There is imposed a special excise tax of 2 percent on the sale of or charge made for the furnishing of lodging by a hotel, rooming house, tourist court, motel, or trailer camp, or the granting of any similar license to use real property, as distinguished from the renting or leasing of real property; provided, that it shall be presumed that the occupancy of real property for a continuous period of one month or more constitutes a rental or lease of real property and not a mere license to use or to enjoy the same.

B.    In addition to that tax imposed and levied at subsection 4.16.010 A. above, the Council of Pierce County, acting pursuant to the authority of and with the purposes stated at Chapter 483, Washington Laws of 1987, hereby imposes and levies a special excise tax of 2 percent on the sale of or charge made for the furnishing of lodging by a hotel, rooming house, tourist court, motel, or trailer camp, or the granting of any similar license to use real property, as distinguished from the renting or leasing of real property; provided, that it shall be presumed that the occupancy of real property for a continuous period of one month or more constitutes a rental or lease of real property and not a mere license to use or to enjoy the same.

C.    The Council of Pierce County, acting pursuant to the authority of and with the purposes stated at Chapter 452, Laws of 1997, Chapter 35, Laws of 1998, and Chapter 67.28 RCW there is imposed an excise tax of 7 percent on the sale or charge made for the furnishing of lodging by a hotel, motel or trailer camp or the granting of any similar license to use real property; provided, that it shall be presumed that the occupancy of real property for a continuous period of one month or more constitutes a rental or lease of real property and not a mere license to use or to enjoy the same. This tax is imposed in lieu of the tax imposed pursuant to PCC 4.16.010 A. and B.

D.    Lodging facilities having 25 or fewer units shall be exempt from the collection of 3 percent of the tax imposed under this Chapter.

E.    The tax paid pursuant to this subsection shall be credited against the amount of sales tax due to the State under Chapter 82.08 RCW on the same sale of lodging, but the credit for taxes imposed under this Section shall not exceed 2 percent. The revenue raised pursuant to this subsection shall be used for tourism promotion or funding tourism-related facilities within unincorporated Pierce County or other jurisdictions where lodging taxes are collected pursuant to this Chapter and the revenues are placed in the fund created at PCC 4.16.080 C.

F.    Definitions.

1.    "Tourism" as used in this subsection is defined as economic activity in geographical areas where the tax imposed in this Section is collected, resulting from tourists, which may include overnight lodgings, meals, tours, gifts, and souvenirs.

2.    "Tourism promotion" as used in this subsection means activities and expenditures designed to increase tourism, including but not limited to advertising, publicizing, or otherwise distributing information for the purpose of attracting and welcoming tourists; developing strategies to expand tourism; operating tourism promotion agencies; and funding the marketing and/or operations of special events and festivals designed to attract tourists.

3.    "A tourism-related facility" means real or tangible personal property with a usable life of three or more years or constructed with volunteer labor that is: (a)(i) owned by a public entity; (ii) owned by a nonprofit organization described under section 501(c)(3) of the Federal Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended; or (iii) owned by a nonprofit organization described under section 501(c)(6) of the Federal Internal Revenue Code of 1986, as amended, a business organization, destination marketing organization, main street organization, lodging association, or chamber of commerce; and (b) used to support tourism, performing arts or accommodate tourist activities.

G.    Whenever the County proposes the imposition of a new tax under Chapter 452, Washington Laws of 1997, an increase in the rate of said tax, the repeal of said tax, or a change in the use of revenue received from said tax, the County shall submit the proposal to the Lodging Tax Advisory Committee (Committee), established pursuant to Chapter 2.93 PCC, for review and comment. The submission shall occur at least 45 days before final action on the proposal by the Council.

The Committee’s comments shall be submitted to the Council in a timely manner and shall include an analysis of the extent to which the proposal will accommodate activities for tourists or increase tourism, and the extent to which the proposal will affect the long term stability of the Tourism Promotion and Capital Facilities Fund.

Failure of the Committee to submit comments before final action by the Council on a new proposal shall not prevent the municipality from acting on the proposal. The County is not required to submit an amended proposal to the Committee.

(Ord. 2018-23 § 1, 2018; Ord. 2016-50 § 1, 2016; Ord. 98-100 § 1 (part), 1998; Ord. 97-20S2 § 2 (part), 1997; Ord. 87-158 § 1 (part), 1987; Ord. 81-17 § 2 (part), 1981; prior Code § 9.12.010)

4.16.020 Definitions.

The definitions of "selling price," "seller," "buyer," "consumer," and all other definitions as are now contained in RCW 82.08.010, and subsequent amendments thereto, are adopted as the definitions for the taxes levied herein. (Ord. 87-158 § 1 (part), 1987; Ord. 81-17 § 2 (part), 1981; prior Code § 9.12.020)

4.16.030 Administration – Collection.

For the purposes of the tax levied in this Chapter:

A.    The Washington State Department of Revenue is designated as the agent of the County for the purpose of collection and administration.

B.    The administrative provisions contained in RCW 82.08.050 through 82.08.070 and in RCW Chapter 82.32 shall apply with respect to administration and collection by the Department.

C.    All rules and regulations adopted by the Department of Revenue for the administration of RCW Chapter 82.08 are adopted.

D.    The Department is empowered, on behalf of the County, to prescribe such special forms and reporting procedures as the Department may deem necessary.

(Ord. 81-17 § 2 (part), 1981; Res. 21334 § 1 (part), 1979; prior Code § 9.12.030)

4.16.040 Credit.

There shall be allowed against the taxes imposed by this Chapter a credit for the full amount of any city tax imposed pursuant to RCW Chapter 67.28 upon the same taxable event upon which a tax is imposed by this Chapter. (Ord. 87-158 § 1 (part), 1987; Ord. 81-17 § 2 (part), 1981; prior Code § 9.12.040)

4.16.050 Taxes Imposed Are Additional.

The special excise tax herein levied in this Chapter shall be in addition to any license fee or any tax imposed or levied under any law or any other resolution or ordinance of the County. (Ord. 87-158 § 1 (part), 1987; Ord. 81-17 § 2 (part), 1981; prior Code § 9.12.050)

4.16.060 Payment of Taxes – Deduction.

Any seller who is required to collect the special excise tax levied in this Chapter shall pay over such tax to the Washington State Department of Revenue, acting on behalf of the County for the County's account. Tax paid pursuant to the provisions of Section 4.16.010 A. of the Pierce County Code shall be deducted from the amount of tax such seller would otherwise be required to collect and to pay over to the Washington State Department of Revenue under RCW 82.08 as required by the provisions of RCW 67.28.190. The deduction from State taxes under RCW 67.28.190 does not apply to taxes imposed under Section 4.16.010 B. of the Pierce County Code. (Ord. 87-158 § 1 (part), 1987; Ord. 81-17 § 2 (part), 1981; prior Code § 9.12.070)

4.16.070 Violations.

Any person, firm, or corporation violating, or failing to comply with any of the provisions of this Chapter or any lawful rule or regulation adopted thereto shall be guilty of a misdemeanor, and upon conviction thereof, shall be punished by a fine not to exceed $500.00, or by imprisonment in the Pierce County Jail for a period of not more than six months or by both such fine and imprisonment. Each separate period, sale or charge for which this Chapter is violated shall be considered a separate offense. (Ord. 87-158 § 1 (part), 1987; Ord. 81-17 § 2 (part), 1981; prior Code § 9.12.090)

4.16.080 Establishment of a Special Fund. Revised 3/18

A.    There is hereby created a special fund in the treasury of Pierce County to be known as the Stadium, Convention, and Tourist Attraction Facilities Fund. All tax collected pursuant to PCC 4.16.010 A. shall be placed in such fund for the purpose of paying all or any part of the cost of acquisition, construction, or operating of stadium facilities, convention center facilities, or to pay or secure the payment of all or any portion of general obligation bonds or revenue bonds issued for the purpose or purposes as specified herein, and additionally to pay for advertising, publicizing, or otherwise distributing information for the purpose of attracting visitors and encouraging tourist expansion, and until withdrawn for use, the monies accumulated in such fund may be invested in interest-bearing securities by the Director of Finance in any manner authorized by law.

B.    Visitor and Convention Promotion Fund. There is hereby established in the treasury of Pierce County a Special Visitor and Convention Promotions Fund, into which all sums received as a result of the levy under PCC 4.16.010 B. be and shall be paid. Such sums as are deposited in said visitor and convention promotions fund shall be used only for the purpose of visitor and convention promotions and development, and until withdrawn for such use, monies accumulated in such fund may be invested in interest bearing securities by the Director of Finance in any manner authorized by law.

C.    There is hereby created a special fund in the treasury of Pierce County, effective January 1, 1998, to be known as the Tourism Promotion and Capital Facilities Fund. All funds raised as a result of the excise tax imposed on the sale or charge made for the furnishing of lodging by a hotel, motel or trailer camp pursuant to Chapter 4.16 PCC shall be placed in such fund effective January 1, 1998, for the purpose of funding tourism promotion or tourism-related capital facilities. Said funds shall be subject to appropriation by the Pierce County Council after considering recommendations made by the Lodging Tax Advisory Committee. Until January 1, 1998, revenue collected pursuant to this Ordinance shall be deposited in existing funds pursuant to PCC 4.16.080 A. and B.

(Ord. 2017-12s § 2 (part), 2017; Ord. 97-20S2 § 1 (part), 1997; Ord. 87-158 § 1 (part), 1987)

4.16.090 Effective Date of Tax.

The effective date of the tax herein imposed at subsection 4.16.010 B. shall be November 1, 1987, and such tax shall be due and payable to Pierce County on such date and all days following, to be collected as heretofore provided.

The effective date of the increase in the tax from 4 to 7 percent herein imposed at subsection 4.16.010 C. shall be January 1, 1999, and such tax shall be due and payable to Pierce County on such date and all days following, to be collected as heretofore provided.

(Ord. 98-100 § 1 (part), 1998; Ord. 87-158 § 1 (part), 1987)

4.16.100 Severability.

If any provision of this Chapter or its application to any person or circumstance is held invalid, the remainder of the Chapter or the application of the provision to other persons or circumstances shall not be affected. (Ord. 89-155 § 8, 1989)