Air-tax-BNB. Less than two weeks after Iowa issued a policy letter saying short-term home rentals are subject to the Iowa Hotel-Motel tax, the leading internet short-term rental matchmaker announced that it will cooperate in collecting lodging taxes in all jurisdictions where it is allowed to operate:
In those places that respect the right of people to share their home, we will work to ensure that the Airbnb community pays its fair share of taxes while honoring our commitment to protect our hosts’ and guests’ privacy. This includes helping to ensure the efficient collection of tourist and/or hotel taxes in cities that have such taxes. We will work to implement this initiative in as many communities as possible.
One city that fails to “respect the right of people to share their home” is my own town of West Des Moines, which succumbed to a one-man moral panic this summer to outlaw such short-term rentals. The West Des Moines lodging tax is 7%, on top of the state 5% rate. I suspect the Airbnb move will nudge municipalities like West Des Moines towards allowing short-term rentals. Nothing assuages a moral panic like revenue.
More coverage is available to TaxNotes subscribers: Airbnb Pledges to Collect Tourist and Hotel Taxes in All Cities (Jennifer DePaul)
It’s Friday, it’s Buzz Day! for Robert D. Flach. Today’s links feature year-end planning, mysterious IRS notices, and lots more.
Jason Dinesen, Was There Really a Good Old Days of Accounting? “So for accountants, is it really true that things were better with business clients ‘way back when’?”
Robert Wood, Beware Willful, Frivolous, Even Self-Incriminating Tax Filings. “So, can you just write ‘Fifth Amendment’ on your tax return and forget all your FBAR woes? Not hardly!”
Carl Smith, Willson v. Comm’r: D.C. Cir. Holds Tax Court Lacks Refund Jurisdiction in Collection Due Process Cases. Agreeing with the Tax Court itself.
Gavin Ekins, Assumption About Global Capital Markets Explains the Differences Between the JCT’s and the Tax Foundation’s Estimates of Bonus Expensing (Tax Policy Blog). “The true peril to capital investment is not the U.S. deficits but excessive taxation of capital income and the resulting sluggish economic growth.”
TaxProf, The IRS Scandal, Day 918. Today’s link is on the unwisdom of wasting effort on impeaching the worthless IRS Commissioner.
Jeremy Scott, Netanyahu’s Economic Reforms and the Laffer Curve (Tax Analysts Blog). “A cursory examination of Israel’s financial situation shows that Netanyahu might have succeeded where President Reagan failed. His tax cuts did pay for themselves.”
Peter Reilly, Ben Carson’s Tax Proposal Takes On The Mortgage And Charity Sacred Cows. “That makes the second thing I have learned about having in common with Doctor Carson this week.”
Howard Gleckman, Could We Get the Tax Code Down to Three Pages? Why Would We Want To? (TaxVox). “And keep in mind that the vast bulk of today’s law governs the taxation of businesses, not individuals. And businesses are very complicated.
Bob McIntyre. Ted Cruz’s Tax Plan Would Cost $16.2 Trillion over 10 Years–Or Maybe Altogether Eliminate Tax Collection (Tax Justice Blog).
The second ditty that I heard on NPR was a report in which a member of the DC city council worried aloud that money “will pollute our politics.” Such a concern is akin to worrying that dropping a moldy bagel into a cesspool will pollute the contents of the cesspool.
Career Corner. Accountants Earn More Than Philosophers (Barely) (Caleb Newquist, Going Concern).