TRAC Subcommittee Hears Proposal to Tax Timeshare Maintenance Fees

2010-08-28

Issue Brief

Yesterday in Charleston, the Local Accommodations and Hospitality Tax Subcommittee of the South Carolina Tax Realignment Commission heard a proposal recommending accommodations taxes be imposed on timeshare maintenance fees.  The plan drafted by a group within the tourism industry would also take proceeds of the tax away from local governments to be given to tourism promotion groups.  The subcommittee did not take public testimony on the issue.

Impact

This proposal seeks to change the fundamental nature of timeshare property by identifying it as a transient use and applying transient taxes to owners.  Such a change would significantly increase the cost of ownership and place a new burden on associations if owners can not pay the new, higher assessments.  It would also damage the marketability of timeshares in South Carolina for both new sales and owner resales.

Position/Call to Action

This proposal incorrectly compares timeshare properties to hotels rather than other residential property used as vacation homes and sometimes available for rent.  As a result, it would create an unequal tax structure based on faulty assumptions.  ARDA and ARDA-ROC oppose this proposal and will testify at the next meeting of the subcommittee, expected to be held in September, to encourage the members to reject it.  ARDA ROC will also be contacting South Carolina owners associations to provide information on this issue and identify volunteers to voice the concerns of timeshare owners on this new plan.  

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