QUINCY -- Months after implementing a tax on Airbnb and similar short-term rental bookings, the city of Quincy is looking to amend how the tax is collected.
Under a proposed ordinance before the Quincy City Council, property owners who issue short-term rentals through online websites such as Airbnb, VRBO, FlipKey and Booking.com will no longer be responsible for collecting the tax and paying it to the city.
Instead, Quincy Treasurer Linda Moore said the burden of collecting the tax and paying it to the city will fall on the shoulders of the companies themselves. The short-term rental tax is equal to the city's 8% tax on traditional hotel and motel occupancy.
"At the end of the day, this should be a very good thing for Quincy residents who use those sites to rent their homes and properties," Moore said. "This is also a good move for the city, because it should mean more timely payments and more accurate payments."
While other cities have seen the number of short-term rental properties operating in their city grow exponentially, Moore said the industry's growth in the Gem City has been a bit slower.
"It is difficult to say with any degree of certainty how many short-term rental properties are in Quincy, because property owners can take their homes on or off of these sites on a daily basis," Moore said. "We believe we have more than 20 short-term rental properties operating in Quincy, though, at any given time."
This is up from April when the number of short-term rental properties was 16.
Officials believe that the tax will generate $10,000 annually.
The ordinance authorizing the change is slated for a second reading at Monday night's Quincy City Council meeting.
The council will likely vote on whether to approve the change at the Monday, Dec. 9, meeting.