SB416 SUB1 Senate Bill 416 History

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Senate Bill No. 416

(By Senators D. Hall, M. Hall, Prezioso,

Boley, Woelfel, Plymale and Beach)


[Originating in the Committee on Finance;

reported February 24, 2015.]



A BILL to repeal §7-18-5 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended; and to amend and reenact §7-18-1 and §7-18-3 of said code, all relating to eliminating exemption from hotel occupancy taxes on rental of hotel and motel rooms for thirty or more consecutive days; redefining certain terms; exempting certain hotel rooms occupied by federal or state officials on official business; and exempting complimentary hotel rooms provided without charge to guests.

Be it enacted by the Legislature of West Virginia:

            That §7-18-5 of the Code of West Virginia, 1931, as amended, be repealed; and that §7-18-1 and §7-18-3 of said code be amended and reenacted, all to read as follows:


§7-18-1. Hotel occupancy tax.

            (a) Authority to impose. -- On and after July 1, 1985, any county or municipality may impose and collect a privilege tax upon the occupancy of hotel rooms located within its taxing jurisdiction. Such The tax shall be imposed and collected as provided in this article.

            (b) Municipal tax. -- A municipal hotel tax shall be imposed by ordinance enacted by the governing body of the municipality, in accordance with the provisions of article eleven, chapter eight of this code. Such The tax shall be imposed uniformly throughout the municipality; and the tax shall apply to all hotels located within the corporate limits of the municipality, including hotels owned by the state or by any political subdivision of this state.

            (c) County tax. -- A county hotel tax shall be imposed by order of the county commission duly entered of record. Such The tax shall be imposed uniformly throughout the county: Provided, That no county commission may impose its tax on hotels located within the corporate limits of any municipality situated, in whole or in part, within the county: Provided, however, That the tax collected by a hotel owned by a municipality but located outside the corporate limits of such the municipality pursuant to this article shall be remitted to the municipality owning such hotel for expenditure pursuant to the provisions of section fourteen of this article. The tax shall apply to all hotels located outside the corporate limits of a municipality, including hotels owned by the state or any political subdivision of this state.

            (d) The tax shall be imposed on the consumer and shall be collected by the hotel operator as part of the consideration paid for the occupancy of a hotel room: Provided, That the tax shall may not be imposed on any consumer occupying a hotel room for thirty or more consecutive days complimentary hotel rooms provided by a hotel operator to guests without charge or federal or state officials occupying a hotel room for official federal or state business. Provided, however, That hotel room occupancy billed directly to the federal government shall be exempt from this tax: Provided further, That rooms paid for by a federal government employee for which reimbursement is made shall be subject to this tax.

§7-18-3. Definitions.

            For the purposes of this article:

            (a) "Consideration paid" or "consideration" means the amount received in money, credits, property or other consideration for or in exchange for the right to occupy a hotel room as herein defined.

            (b) "Consumer" means a person who pays the consideration for the use or occupancy of a hotel room. The term "consumer" shall does not be construed to mean the government of the United States of America, its agencies or instrumentalities, or the government of the State of West Virginia or political subdivisions thereof.

            (c) "Hotel" means any facility, building or buildings, publicly or privately owned, including a facility located in a state, county or municipal park, in which the public may, for a consideration, obtain sleeping accommodations. The term shall include includes, but is not be limited to, boarding houses, hotels, motels, inns, courts, condominiums, lodges, cabins and tourist homes. The term "hotel" shall include includes state, county and city parks offering accommodations as herein set forth. The term "hotel" shall not be construed to does not mean any a hospital, sanitarium, extended care facility, nursing home or university or college housing unit, or any facility providing fewer than three in private homes, not exceeding a total of ten days in a calendar year, nor any tent, trailer or camper campsites: Provided, That where a university or college housing unit provides sleeping accommodations for the general nonstudent public for a consideration, the term "hotel" shall does, if otherwise applicable, apply to such those accommodations for the purposes of this tax.

            (d) "Hotel operator" means the person who is proprietor of a hotel, whether in the capacity of owner, lessee, mortgagee in possession, licensee, trustee in possession, trustee in bankruptcy, receiver, executor or in any other capacity. Where the hotel operator performs his or her functions through a managing agent of any type or character other than an employee, the managing agent shall also be deemed is a hotel operator for the purposes of this article and shall have has the same duties and liabilities as his or her principal. Compliance with the provisions of this article by either the principal or the managing agent shall is, however, be considered to be compliance by both.

            (e) "Hotel room" means any room or suite of rooms or other facility affording sleeping accommodations to the general public and situated within a hotel. The term "hotel room" shall not be construed to mean does not include:

            (1) A banquet room, meeting room or any other room not primarily used for, or in conjunction with, sleeping accommodations;

            (2) Sleeping accommodations rented on a month-to-month basis or other rental arrangement for thirty days or longer at the inception at a boarding house, condominium, cabin, tourist home, apartment or home.

            (f) "Person" means any individual, firm, partnership, joint venture, association, syndicate, social club, fraternal organization, joint stock company, receiver, corporation, guardian, trust, business trust, trustee, committee, estate, executor, administrator or any other group or combination acting as a unit.

            (g) "State park" means any state-owned facility which is part of this state's park and recreation system established pursuant to this code. For purposes of this article, any recreational facility otherwise qualifying as a "hotel" and situated within a state park shall be deemed is considered to be solely within the county in which the building or buildings comprising said the facility are physically situated, notwithstanding the fact that the state park within which said the facility is located may lie within the jurisdiction of more than one county.

            (h) "Tax", "taxes" or "this tax" means the hotel occupancy tax authorized by this article.

            (i) "Taxing authority" means a municipality or county levying or imposing the tax authorized by this article.

            (j) "Taxpayer" means any person liable for the tax authorized by this article.

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