Airbnb to start collecting taxes in Amsterdam, San Jose, Chicago and Washington, DC – TechCrunch

Over the past few years, Airbnb has worked with local lawmakers and regulators on ways to comply with local hotel and lodging tax laws. These efforts have been slow, as his public policy team has more or less had to work with each city to do so.

But things are accelerating. Today, the company announced that it will soon begin collecting and remitting tourist taxes in four new cities: Amsterdam, San José, Chicago and Washington, DC

Airbnb will begin collecting taxes in Amsterdam and San Jose, California starting tomorrow, and expanding that to Chicago and Washington, DC on February 15. This follows previous announcements that he would collect taxes in Portland, Oregon and San Francisco.

So far, the company has said it has raised and remitted $ 5 million for these two markets since the introduction of these taxes just a few months ago. He’s releasing that figure in part to show how much money other governments are missing by not working with him yet.

While Airbnb could theoretically start collecting taxes in any market, there are often legal barriers to doing so. In some places, such as San Francisco, the company needed laws passed that would legitimize the business it operates in those cities.

This is the case in New York, where the company is engaged in a long-standing struggle with the New York attorney general’s office. NY AG Eric Schneiderman has pressured the company to shut down what the state considers illegal hotel operations, but under current law they estimate 3/4 of the ads on the platform would be considered illegal.

For its part, Airbnb is calling for the laws to be changed and is trying to soften the pot by estimating that it would collect $ 65 million in taxes in New York. It just needs the local government to create a framework within which it would be able to legally collect and remit these taxes.

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