presents
Voter’s Edge California
Conozca la información antes de votar.
Presentado por
MapLight
League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
November 6, 2018 — Elección General de California
Local

City of Sebastopol
Measure R - Majority Approval Required

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Resultados electorales

Se aprueba

2,903 votos si (71.4%)

1,161 votos no (28.6%)

100% de distritos activos (3/3).

Shall the measure to clarify and increase the City of Sebastopol's transient occupancy tax by 2%, until repealed by the voters, which is estimated to annually raise $514,000, be adopted?

¿Qué es esta propuesta?

Información básica sobre la iniciativa de ley — Información oficial sobre esta iniciativa

Resumen

Sonoma County ROV (Sample Ballot)

CITY ATTORNEY'S IMPARTIAL ANALYSIS OF MEASURE R

On July 17, 2018, the City Council of the City of Sebastopol voted unanimously to place this measure on the ballot of the November 6, 2018 Election.

Measure R would clarify and increase the City of Sebastopol’s transient occupancy tax by 2%.

The current TOT is 10% for the City and 2% which is transmitted to the Sonoma County Tax Collector for the purpose of promoting tourism in Sonoma County. The tax rate proposed for the hotel tax is 12% (TOT).

The TOT is levied on the gross rent charged by the operator of a hotel, motel or inn for the use or possession of any room. Individuals that stay for a period of thirty (30) consecutive calendar days or less are subject to the TOT. If any individual stays thirty-one (31) consecutive days, the individual is no longer considered a transient starting on the 31st day.

This measure also clarifies language adjusting the claim period from three years to one year which will more closely align the claim period with the statutory claim period established by the Government Claims Act.

If approved, the Measure will continue to be in effect until repealed by the voters.

A “Yes” vote is a vote to approve the increase in the TOT tax. A “No” vote is a vote against the increase in the TOT tax.

The proposed increase of this tax is subject to approval of a majority of the voters voting on the measure. The measure would be approved if it receives a simple majority of “Yes” votes.

The above statement is an impartial analysis of Measure R. If you desire a copy of the ordinance or measure, please call the City Clerk at (707) 823-1153 and a copy will be mailed at no cost to you.

Dated: August 20, 2018

s/Larry McLaughlin City Attorney

Published Arguments — Arguments for and against the ballot measure

Argumento A FAVOR

ARGUMENT IN FAVOR OF MEASURE R

Vote Yes on Measure ____ to raise needed revenues for vital City services with zero cost to Sebastopol residents.

The Transient Occupancy Tax (“TOT” or “hotel bed tax”) is charged to travelers when they stay at a hotel or other temporary lodging for a stay of 30 days or less. Most cities in California charge TOT for visitors. Sebastopol’s current TOT rate is 10% which is lower than other jurisdictions surrounding Sebastopol. Raising the TOT by 2% will align Sebastopol with what many of our neighbors are charging, while keeping Sebastopol hotels competitive in our region, and raising much needed revenue for Sebastopol.

The TOT Sebastopol collects, ensures that visitors pay for the added demand they cause on city services such as roads, water, sewer, police and fire.

The TOT is one of the City’s primary revenue streams, but it is the only tax that does not fall on Sebastopol residents to pay.

This measure also modifies how TOT is collected so visitors who book rooms directly with a hotel or other kind of lodging, pay the same TOT rate as people who book online through a third party.

Approving Measure _____ will raise revenues without costing residents a penny. We strongly urge a Yes vote on Measure _____.

s/ Patrick Slayter
Mayor, City of Sebastopol

s/ Michael Carnacchi
Council Member, City of Sebastopol

s/ Neysa Hinton
Vice Mayor, City of Sebastopol

s/ Sarah Glade Gurney
Council Member, City of Sebastopol

s/ Una JM Glass
Council Member, City of Sebastopol

 

— Sonoma County ROV (Sample Ballot)

Argumento EN CONTRA

NO ARGUMENT WAS SUBMITTED AGAINST MEASURE R

— Sonoma County ROV (Sample Ballot)

Leer la legislación propuesta

Legislación propuesta

AN ORDINANCE OF THE CITY OF SEBASTOPOL AMENDING SECTIONS 3.12.030 AND 3.12.120(A) OF THE SEBASTOPOL MUNICIPAL CODE, WHICH IMPOSES THE CITY’S TRANSIENT OCCUPANCY TAX, TO INCREASE THE TAX RATE BY 2%, CLARIFY THE MEASURE OF THE TAX, AND TO ADJUST THE REFUND CLAIM PERIOD

Sections:

Findings
1. Amendment to Section 3.12.030 of the City’s Municipal Code
2. Amendment to Section 3.12.120(A) of the City’s Municipal Code 3. Effect on Chapter 3.12 of the City’s Municipal Code
4. Voters’ Power

FINDINGS

The voters of the City of Sebastopol hereby find, declare and do ordain as follows:

The City’s transient occupancy tax (TOT) is charged to visitors who stay overnight in a hotel room. It is currently set at 10% of the rent charged by the operator. In fiscal year 2016-17, the TOT generated approximately $514,000.

Increasing the TOT by 2% will help align the City with the TOT rates of many neigh- boring cities. Annual revenue is expected to grow moderately in the near term and then increase significantly in the future when new proposed hotel establishments are built.

Changing the measure of the TOT from the rent charged by the operator to the rent paid by the transient will put all transients on an equal footing. Currently, when a transient books a room directly with a hotel, that transient will pay more transient occupancy tax than a transient that books the same room at the same price through a third party, such as an online travel agency. This issue has become more prominent in recent years due to the rise of online travel agencies. By changing the measure of the tax to the rent paid by the transient, from the rent charged by the operator, all transients will pay the tax at the same rate.

Additionally, adjusting the refund claim period from three years to one year will more closely align the claim period with the statutory claim period established by the Government Claims Act.

Section 1. Amendment to Section 3.12.030 of the City’s Municipal Code. Section 3.12.030 of the City’s Municipal Code is amended as follows:

3.12.030 Tax imposed.

For the privilege of occupancy in any hotel, each transient is subject to and shall pay a tax in the amount of 1012 percent of the rent charged by the operator paid by the transient. Said tax constitutes a debt owed by the tran- sient to the City, which is extinguished only by payment to the operator or to the City. The transient shall pay the tax to the operator of the hotel at the time the rent is paid. If the rent is paid in installments, a proportionate share of the tax shall be paid with each installment. The unpaid tax shall be due upon the transient’s ceasing to occupy space in the hotel. If for any reason the tax due is not paid to the operator of the hotel, the Tax Administrator may require that such tax shall be paid directly to the Tax Administrator.

Section 2. Amendment to Section 3.12.120(A) of the City’s Municipal Code. Section 3.12.120, subsection A, is amended as follows:

3.12.120 Refunds.

A. Whenever the amount of any tax, interest or penalty has been overpaid or paid more than once or has been erroneously or illegally collected or

 

received by the City under this chapter, it may be refunded as provided in subsections B and C of this section provided a claim in writing therefor, stating under penalty of perjury the specific grounds upon which the claim is founded, is filed with the Tax Administrator within three one years of the date of payment. The claim shall be on forms furnished by the Tax Collector.

Section 3. Effect on Chapter 3.12 of the City’s Municipal Code. Chapter 3.12 of the City’s Municipal Code, which sets forth the City’s transient occupancy tax, otherwise remains in full force and effect, including, but not limited to, the method of collection for the transient occupancy tax.

Section 4. Voters’ Power. By approving this ordinance, the voters authorize the City Council to amend this tax without subsequent voter approval so long as such amendment does not increase the amount of the tax paid by any taxpayer. This tax shall remain in effect until repealed or amended by the voters.

THE FOREGOING ORDINANCE was adopted by Declaration of the vote of the Sebastopol City Council on the ____ day of __________, 2018, at a regular meet- ing of the Sebastopol City Council by the following vote, to wit:

City of Sebastopol City Council:

Ayes:
Noes:
Abstain:

Absent:

APPROVED:_______________________ Mayor

ATTEST:__________________________ City Clerk

 
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