City Council looks to bring more awareness to business tax on short term rental properties

Local News

PANAMA CITY BEACH, Fla. (WMBB) — The internet has changed the way people look for lodging when traveling to Panama City Beach as hotels are no longer the only avenue. Options through Air BNB and VRBO are now high on the search list.

Panama City Beach officials are looking to bring some more awareness of a current tax on short term rentals.

The council had its first reading of the ordinance during its regular meeting on Thursday morning, requiring the owners of these properties to have online rental platforms post their business tax receipt number for each property. This requires property owners to enter that information when listing their property for short-term rental on these platforms.

This allows the renters an understanding of the one percent tax and aids city staff in enforcing the city’s current regulations.

Mayor Mike Thomas says the city does not have a property tax so collecting the business tax helps keep the city going.

“We make a living simply off sales tax from percentages we get back so the more numbers we have that raise those percentages and the more business we do like Gulf Coast Jam gives us the revenue to pave our roads and other things we require to do,” Thomas said.

The council will have their second reading of the ordinance at their next meeting on November 14 at 6:00 p.m.

The council also extended the facilities contract with Gulf Coast Jam to allow the event to be held at Frank Brown Park through 2025.

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