Suffolk County’s per diem rental tax!
from Markowitz, Fenelon & Bank, LLP
Partners Front: Thomas P. Terry, CPA, John E. Larkin. CPA/ABV
Partners Back: Philip Tutino, CPA, Robert T. White. CPA/CFP and Joseph Mammina, CPA
With the tourism season rushing upon Long Island please be aware that the Suffolk County Comptroller’s office requires any facility providing overnight lodging for a fee in Suffolk County to collect hotel/motel occupancy tax from the occupant at a rate of 3% of the per-diem rental rate.
The County guidelines state that any facility providing short-term lodging of less than 30 days on an overnight basis including those commonly known as Bed & Breakfasts, Inns, Cabins, Cottages, Campgrounds, Tourist Homes, Guest Homes and Convention Centers is required to collect the occupancy tax at the rate of 3% per-diem rental rate, and file quarterly occupancy tax returns. This also includes any rentals through online rental sites such as Airbnb.
In order to file this tax return you MUST register with the Suffolk County Comptroller within 10 days of conducting a qualifying lodging rental. Upon receipt of this application the County will issue you a Certificate of Authority, which MUST be prominently posted in the lodging facility for patrons to view. The receipt of the Certificate of Authority allows you to collect the 3% occupancy tax from patrons. The 3% tax collected must be remitted to the County through the Occupancy Tax Return and be postmarked no later than the 20th day of March, June, September and December. Once registered the taxpayer MUST file returns every quarter even if no rental income was earned or tax collected.
The Guidelines and Legal Authority for Suffolk County can be found in the link below in regards to this matter. Every facility not in compliance with the Suffolk County Hotel/Motel Occupancy Tax Program (Chapter 523, Article II of the Suffolk County Code) will be subject to a fine of $50.00 for every day of non-registration and each lodging facility not registered. The taxpayer will also be subject to a 10% penalty plus interest on the amount of tax owed for any Occupancy Tax Returns that are filed late. Please be aware that Suffolk County is actively pursuing individuals and businesses that are not complying with this filing requirement.
Thanks for your past support of the Business Alliance as we enter our 24th year. 2016 is a year of transition on the Town Board, with a new Supervisor and two new Council members. This will be a year needing special attention on your behalf. Thanks to all of you who’ve renewed your membership. Sending a gentle reminder to those of you who haven’t yet renewed that we count on your dues as our financial resource to continue our work on your behalf.
Let’s all extend a warm welcome to our newest members:
Antimatter Graphics (Ryan Miller)
Fisher Signs & Shirts (Ron Fisher)
Innovative Turf Systems (Tom White)
and welcome back Strong Oil Company (Evans Edson)
Enjoy the rest of the summer and let’s hope it’s a prosperous season for all.
Ann LaWall, President and Sheryl Heather, Executive Director
If you know someone who shares our interest in protecting the business community, please pass along a membership application! Download membership application here