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Transient Occupancy (Hotel) Tax


Transient Occupancy (Hotel) Tax

Effective January 1, 2013

The Transient Occupancy Tax is based on §§ 32-239 et. seq. of the Code of the City of Roanoke. The tax is eight percent (8%) of the charge made for room rental, lodging or space furnished to transients (guests) by any public or private hotel, inn, hostelry, tourist home or house, motel rooming house, bed & breakfast inn, or other lodging place within the city of Roanoke offering lodging for five (5) or more persons at any one time.

    The rate of tax is eight percent (8%) of the total amount paid for room rental by or for a transient to any hotel or motel.

    Every person receiving any payment for room rental with respect to this tax shall collect the amount of the tax from the transient or from the person paying for the room rental at the time payment for the room rental is made.
    No Transient Occupancy Tax shall be payable in any of the following instances:
    • On room rental paid by any federal, state, or city of Roanoke official or employee when on official business.
      The Transient Occupancy Tax is imposed on room rentals by federal, state or city of Roanoke employees who are on official government business unless the rental is billed directly to the government and/or paid by government check or voucher to the hotel or motel, or paid by a government credit card.
      When the federal, state or city of Roanoke employee pays for the room rental with cash, personal check, or personal credit card, the rental is subject to state or local tax even if the employee has a government exemption certificate, military orders, government I.D. or the like.
      If the government has to reimburse the employee or advance the money for the employee, then the room rent and tax liability is that of the employee and not of the government. Therefore, there is no exemption from the tax under the doctrine of intergovernmental tax immunity.
      For more information on this subject, see the court cases entitled Comptroller v. World Inns, 528 A,2d 477 (Md., 1987) and McCulloch v. Maryland, 17 U.S. 316, 4 L. Ed. 579 (1819).
    • On room rental paid to any hospital, medical clinic, nursing home, convalescent home or home for aged people.
    • On rooms, lodgings or accommodations supplied to a guest for a period of 90 continuous days or more. After a transient has occupied a room or received other accommodations for 90 continuous days or more, the business furnishing the room or other accommodations may refund the tax actually collected from the person. In filing a subsequent return with the city, the business may deduct from gross sales, in the place provided, the amount of the charges for which the tax was refunded.
    Documentation is required to substantiate any exemptions claimed on the monthly report.
    Every person receiving any payment for room rental shall complete and sign a monthly remittance form indicating the total amount of room rental charges collected, the tax required to be collected and any exemptions.

    Documentation of any exemptions must be attached to the monthly report.

    The monthly report along with the tax remittance must be received by the City Treasurer's Office by the 20th of the month for taxes collected in the preceding month. The seller may use the mail, but the responsibility for late delivery rests with the seller. If the payment due date falls on a weekend or a government holiday, the next business day shall become the due date.

    Make all checks payable to: Treasurer, City of Roanoke

    Send all payments to:
    City of Roanoke Treasurer
    P. O. Box 1451
    Roanoke, VA 24007-1451

    It is important to remember that this tax is a "trust" fund tax. That means that the tax is collected from your customers and temporarily held in trust before being remitted to the City of Roanoke. It should not be used for any other financial obligation or purpose.

    The Registration for Tax Collection Form must be completed by each hotel, as defined in the Code. This form must also be completed each time there is any change to the information listed, such as address changes. See the instructions on the reverse of the form for additional information.

    The seller (or business) must maintain for three years complete records as may be necessary to determine the amount of the tax and any of the exemptions as reported on the remittance form. These records are subject to inspection and audit.

    If any seller shall fail or refuse to file any report or to remit to the treasurer the tax required to be collected and paid on or before the time specified, a penalty in the amount of ten percent shall be added to the tax if the failure is for not more than thirty days. An additional ten percent of the tax owed for each thirty days during which the failure continues, not to exceed twenty-five percent , with a minimum penalty of $2, shall be added to the tax due.

    If any person shall fail or refuse to remit to the treasurer the tax required to be collected and paid within the time and in the amount specified, interest at the maximum yearly rates authorized by the general law of the commonwealth shall be added to the tax for each year or portion thereof from the first day following the day upon which the tax is due. Interest = (Days Past Due/365) x Interest Rate x Tax Due.

    Any person violating or failing to comply with any provision of the Code governing this tax, shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. Conviction of such violation shall not relieve such person from the payment, collection or remittance of the Transient Occupancy Tax.

    Whenever any person required to collect and pay to the city the Transient Occupancy Tax shall cease to operate or otherwise dispose of his business, the reporting form and any tax and penalties due shall be immediately filed and paid.

    Department of Finance
    Noel C. Taylor Municipal Building
    215 Church Avenue, SW, Room 252
    Roanoke, VA 24011-1513
    (540) 853-6826 or (540) 853-6828

    FAX (540) 853-2458