Hawaii legislative tourism leaders discuss vacation rentals
Waikiki Beach (Image: Hawaii News Now/file)
By AUDREY McAVOY Associated Press
HONOLULU (AP) - The chairmen of Hawaii's House and Senate tourism committees expect to meet in the upcoming week to resolve differences over vacation rental tax bills that have passed their respective chambers.
Both bills would enable websites like Airbnb to collect state taxes on behalf of people renting rooms and homes.
Short-term rental operators are already required to pay general excise taxes and transient accommodations taxes under current law.
But supporters say the legislation could help the state collect $100 million in taxes that are not currently being paid.
The issue is contentious in part because so many vacation rentals are operated in violation of county law.
This is particularly prevalent on Oahu, where the county has not authorized any new short-term rentals since the late 1980s.
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