For the past several years, the hotel industry has asked the Maryland General Assembly to bring parity to the lodging industry by requiring the platforms to collect and remit the relevant taxes. Up until this year, MML and MACo were included in the early discussions and the bill that would ultimately be introduced. This year’s bill (HB 884/SB 533), however, only focused on the state sales and use tax.
MML staff conferred with the Senate sponsor, Majority Leader Guy Guzzone, and hotel industry representatives the Friday before the hearing to discuss an amendment to include the hotel occupancy tax. Senator Guzzone walked away from that meeting open to the idea and included in his opening testimony on February 27 that he would appreciate the opportunity to work-group this bill in order to resolve the remaining issues.
MML testified in support of the bill with an amendment to include the hotel occupancy tax at the hearing in each chamber, citing concerns of parity, and how the current system requires hotel guests to pay for the tourism programs that attract people to the area, while Airbnb guests do not.
Over the next couple of weeks, League staff will seek to get the hotel tax included through the Senate workgroup.