Chapter 3.20


3.20.010    Tax levied.

3.20.020    Definitions.

3.20.030    Deduction from state of Washington sales tax.

3.20.040    Lodging tax fund – Use of tax revenues.

3.20.050    Designation of Department of Revenue as agent.

3.20.060    Lodging tax advisory committee recommendation.

3.20.070    Noncompliance – Penalty.

3.20.010 Tax levied.

There is hereby levied a special excise tax of four percent on the sale of or charge made for the furnishing of lodging that is subject to tax under Chapter 82.08 RCW, said tax including the “basic” two percent lodging tax as authorized by RCW 67.28.180 and the “special” two percent lodging tax as authorized by RCW 67.28.181, as now adopted and hereafter amended. The tax imposed under Chapter 82.08 RCW applies to the sale of or charge made for the furnishing of short term rental lodging and the granting of any similar license to use real property, as distinguished from the renting or leasing of real property. 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 enjoy the same. (Ord. 3172 § 2 (Exh. A), 2017; Ord. 2663 § 2, 1998; Ord. 2612 § 2, 1997).

3.20.020 Definitions.

The definitions of “selling price,” “seller,” “buyer,” “consumer,” and all other definitions as are now contained in RCW 67.28.080 and 82.08.010, and subsequent amendments thereto, are adopted as the definitions for the tax levied in this chapter. (Ord. 2612 § 2, 1997).

3.20.030 Deduction from state of Washington sales tax.

The tax levied in this chapter shall be in addition to any license fee or any other tax imposed or levied under any law or any other ordinance of the city; provided, the first two percent of the tax shall be deducted from the amount of tax the seller would otherwise be required to collect and pay to the Department of Revenue under Chapter 82.08 RCW. (Ord. 2612 § 2, 1997).

3.20.040 Lodging tax fund – Use of tax revenues.

There is created a special fund in the treasury of the city and all taxes collected under this chapter shall be placed in this special lodging tax fund to be used solely for the purpose of paying all or any part of the cost of tourism promotion, acquisition of tourism-related facilities, or operation of tourism-related facilities or to pay for any other uses as authorized in Chapter 67.28 RCW, as now adopted or hereafter amended. (Ord. 2612 § 2, 1997).

3.20.050 Designation of Department of Revenue as agent.

For the purposes of the tax levied in this chapter:

A. The Department of Revenue is designated as the agent of the city for the purposes of collection and administration of the tax.

B. The administrative provisions contained in RCW 82.08.050 through 82.08.140 and in Chapter 82.32 RCW, as now adopted and hereafter amended, shall apply to administration and collection of the tax by the Department of Revenue.

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

D. The Department of Revenue is authorized to prescribe and utilize such forms and reporting procedures as the department may deem necessary and appropriate. (Ord. 2612 § 2, 1997).

3.20.060 Lodging tax advisory committee recommendation.

A. Lodging Tax Proposal Review. Not less than 45 days before taking final action on any lodging tax proposals as enumerated below, and in accordance with Chapter 2.74 PTMC, the city council shall submit to the lodging tax advisory committee, for its review and comment, proposals regarding the following:

1. The imposition of a proposed lodging tax;

2. Any increase in the rate of such tax;

3. Repeal of an exemption from such a tax; or

4. A change in the use of the revenue received from such a tax.

B. Report from the Lodging Tax Advisory Committee. Upon receiving a proposal from the city council, the lodging tax advisory committee shall analyze 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-range stability of the city’s lodging tax fund. The committee shall submit a written recommendation to the Port Townsend city council within 30 days of receiving the proposal from the city council. The report shall be advisory to the Port Townsend city council, and shall not be binding upon the council. Failure of the committee to submit its report to the city council in a timely fashion prior to passage of the proposal shall not prevent the city council from acting on the proposal. (Ord. 2612 § 2, 1997).

3.20.070 Noncompliance – Penalty.

It is unlawful for any person, firm, or corporation to fail to collect or remit the tax in compliance with the provisions of this chapter. Violation of this section shall constitute a civil penalty. Every person convicted of failing or refusing to collect or remit the tax in violation of any provision of this chapter shall be punished by a fine in a sum not to exceed $500.00. Each day of violation shall be considered a separate offense. (Ord. 2612 § 2, 1997).