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PA H.B. 1177 - An Act amending Title 53 (Municipalities Generally) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, further providing for initiative of electors seeking consolidation or merger with new home rule charter; providing for a hotel room rental tax in certain third class counties; and making an editorial change.
Here is some general state news that you may find of interest:
MA - Gov. Deval Patrick (D) on Friday signed into law the state budget bill. The $36.5 billion spending plan was sent to the Governor by lawmakers last week.
MI - In a rare summer voting session, the Senate on Wednesday may take a final vote on a bill expanding medical marijuana sales. The legislature returns to session full time Sept. 9. http://www.freep.com/article/20140714/NEWS06/307140023/legislature-session-marijuana-civil-rights-michigan
NY - Long-time GOP state Senator and chair of the Senate Energy Committee, George Maziarz, unexpectedly announced that he will not run for re-election this fall. Although Maziarz denies wrongdoing, he was thought to be a target of ongoing state and federal campaign finance probes. His resignation could hurt Republicans' effort to hold the Senate in November.
NC - The House and Senate remain at odds over the budget, but lawmakers hope to wrap up the remaining non-budget items on the legislative agenda this week. There is some talk that leaders could end the session without passing a budget and instead continue to operate under the 2-year budget passed in 2013.
PA - Gov. Tom Corbett (R) signed the state budget Thursday with $72 million in line-item vetoes. The Governor also reiterated his desire for state lawmakers, who are currently on summer break, to return to Harrisburg and pass pension reform legislation. http://www.pennlive.com/midstate/index.ssf/2014/07/gov_corbetts_budget_decision_l.htm
Bed Bugs/Pest Infestation
MA S.B. 1062 188th (Current) An Act relative to cimex lectularius By Mr. Richard T. Moore, a petition (accompanied by bill, Senate, No. 1062) of Richard T. Moore for legislation relative to bed bugs. Public Health.
HI H.B. 1671 Removes the current cap on transient accommodations tax revenues to be distributed to the counties and establishes the distribution of these revenues as a percentage of TAT collected.
MO S.B. 896 Authorizes Perry County to impose a transient guest tax
PA H.B. 1177 An Act amending Title 53 (Municipalities Generally) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, further providing for initiative of electors seeking consolidation or merger with new home rule charter; providing for a hotel room rental tax in certain third class counties; and making an editorial change.
Bed Bugs/Pest Infestation
NEW: NJ S.B. 2252 Establishes procedures to prevent and eradicate bedbug infestations in certain residential property. "Dwelling" or "multiple dwelling" means a multiple dwelling as defined in section 3 of the "Hotel and Multiple Dwelling Law," P.L.1967, c.76 (C.55:13A-3), except that this definition shall not include any common interest community.
NEW: PA H.B. 1177 An Act amending Title 53 (Municipalities Generally) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes, further providing for initiative of electors seeking consolidation or merger with new home rule charter; providing for a hotel room rental tax in certain third class counties; and making an editorial change.
LA H.B. 255 TAX/HOTEL OCCUPANCY: Authorizes the governing authority of the city of Carencro to levy a hotel occupancy tax
LA S.B. 435 MUNICIPALITIES: Authorizes the city of Scott to levy a hotel occupancy tax not to exceed five percent of the rent or fee charged for such occupancy.
LA S.B. 648 SPECIAL DISTRICTS: Creates and provides for the Old LNB Building Redevelopment District in East Baton Rouge Parish. Proposed law authorizes the district to levy a tax upon the occupancy of hotel rooms, motel rooms, and overnight camping facilities, and a tax upon the sale at retail, the use, the lease or rental, the consumption and storage for use or consumption of tangible personal property and on sales of services. The tax must be at least equal to the aggregate rate of all taxes upon the occupancy of hotel rooms, motel rooms, and overnight camping facilities levied and collected within the parish of East Baton Rouge. The aggregate sales tax within the district shall be at least equal to the aggregate rate of such sales taxes levied and collected within the parish of East Baton Rouge.
NC H.B. 1244 AN ACT to authorize increasing the Wilson county occupancy tax.
SC S.B. 985 A BILL TO AMEND THE CODE OF LAWS OF SOUTH CAROLINA, 1976, BY ADDING ARTICLE 6 TO CHAPTER 1, TITLE 6, TO ENACT THE FAIRNESS IN LODGING ACT SO AS TO ALLOW MUNICIPALITIES AND COUNTIES BY ORDINANCE TO IMPLEMENT ADDITIONAL ENFORCEMENT PROVISIONS FOR THE BUSINESS LICENSE TAX AND THE LOCAL ACCOMMODATIONS TAX AS THOSE PROVISIONS APPLY TO THE OWNERS OF RESIDENTIAL REAL PROPERTY WHO RENT THE PROPERTY TO TOURISTS, INCLUDING DATA SHARING WITH THE SOUTH CAROLINA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE, SPECIFIC NOTICE TO PROPERTY OWNERS INCLUDED IN PROPERTY TAX BILLS, AN ADDITIONAL PENALTY THAT MAY BE IMPOSED FOR NONCOMPLIANCE AFTER THE RECEIPT OF SUCH A NOTICE, AND DIRECTIONS TO THE SOUTH CAROLINA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE TO IDENTIFY RENTAL BY OWNER WEBSITES ADVERTISING TOURISTS RENTALS AND REQUEST THEM TO POST ON THE WEBSITES A STATEMENT REGARDING THE LEGAL OBLIGATIONS OF THE OWNERS OF PROPERTY IN THIS STATE LISTED ON THE WEBSITE, TO PAY ALL APPLICABLE LOCAL AND STATE TAXES AND FEES WITH RESPECT TO SUCH RENTALS; AND TO AMEND SECTIONS 6-1-120 , 12-54-240 , AS AMENDED, AND 12-4-310 , RELATING RESPECTIVELY TO THE CONFIDENTIALITY OF LOCAL AND STATE TAX DATA AND EXCEPTIONS THERETO, AND THE DUTIES OF THE SOUTH CAROLINA DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE, SO AS TO CONFORM THEM TO THE PROVISIONS OF THIS ACT.
LA H.B. 255 TAX/HOTEL OCCUPANCY: Authorizes the governing authority of the city of Carencro to levy a hotel occupancy tax
LA H.B. 1191 TAX/HOTEL OCCUPANCY: Authorizes the Shreveport-Bossier Convention and Tourist Bureau to levy and collect an additional hotel occupancy tax within the jurisdiction of the bureau
NY A.B. 1234 Authorizes the town of Greenburgh, specified villages therein, and the village of Sleepy Hollow in the town of Mount Pleasant to adopt a local law to impose a 3% hotel/motel occupancy tax.
NY A.B. 4445 Provides that the hotel room occupancy tax cannot be imposed in the county of Richmond.
NY A.B. 4984 Imposes an occupancy tax in the town or village of Mamaroneck.
NY A.B. 6828 Imposes an occupancy tax in the town of North Castle.
NY A.B. 6829 Imposes an occupancy tax in the village of Harrison.
NY A.B. 7134 Imposes an occupancy tax in the city of Yonkers.
NY A.B. 7628 Authorizes the town of Woodbury, Orange county, to impose, by local law, a tax on hotel and motel occupancy of up to five percent of the charge therefor.
NY A.B. 7966 Authorizes the county of Franklin to impose a motel and hotel tax of 5 percent.
NY A.B. 8938 Enables the county of Albany to impose and collect taxes on occupancy of hotel or motel rooms in Albany county for an additional two years.
NY A.B. 9533 Authorizes the town of Southampton, county of Suffolk to enact a hospitality business investment exemption.
NY A.B. 9616 Authorizes the county of Delaware to impose a tax on hotel and motel occupancy of up to two percent of the charge therefor.
NY A.B. 9626 Establishes an occupancy tax in the village of Tuckahoe.
NY S.B. 6723 Enables the county of Albany to impose and collect taxes on occupancy of hotel or motel rooms in Albany county for an additional two years.
NY S.B. 7229 Authorizes the town of Southampton, county of Suffolk to enact a hospitality business investment exemption.
NC H.B. 1244 AN ACT to authorize increasing the wilson county occupancy tax.
Each year, CHPA profiles the newest members to join the Board of Directors in order to highlight their path to leadership and help members get to know them a little better. Read more about Tania Odabashian, CCHP, CPA of Corporate Apartment Specialists, Inc. below. You can also contact her at the information below. In addition to now serving on the CHPA Board of Directors, Tania has dedicated many hours to several CHPA committees and task forces. She also holds her Certified Corporate Housing Professional (CCHP) certification as well as her Certified Public Accountant (CPA) certification.
Tania Odabashin, CCHP, CPA
Corporate Apartment Specialists, Inc.
703.979.2830 ex25 | firstname.lastname@example.org
What was your line of employment before corporate housing? What brought you to corporate housing?
I started my career in public accounting at Price Waterhouse back when it was the Big 8. I have my CPA and was in the audit division. I was able to transition to the consulting practice within the firm. Ultimately, I ended up with one of my clients MCI as a project manager in the Business Markets division. I worked a ton of hours but learned a lot in both of those companies. My husband Ned Scharpf had started Corporate Apartment Specialists a few years before asking me to join. It was during the time that he absorbed a chunk of inventory from one of our competitors that was leaving the marketplace that he asked me to join. While the prospect of joining the business was exciting, it also was scary as I had a strong career in telecom plus I was unsure about the ease of working with my spouse. That was about 17 years ago, and so far so good.
How many years have you been involved in corporate housing?
Directly 17 years but more like 19 since for the two years prior to joining CAS, I acted as a sounding board and funding source.
Is there any aspect of the industry that you would like to change?
I have seen some great improvements in the industry during my time as a member. The growing partnerships and collaboration among competitors in the same market would have been unheard of a decade and a half ago. And yet, we have a long ways to go for any partnership collaboration with the multi-family industry. We are a huge customer base and yet, if anything, it maybe has gotten worse in my time in the industry. We are facing the REITs that are more about their shareholders than their customers. In my mind, being customer focused will always improve shareholder value. The multi-family industry doesn’t always share that philosophy.
When did you become involved in CHPA? Why?
It was about 15 years ago in Las Vegas at the conference held at Caesars Palace. We were called AIHP then. It was amazing. Our furniture vendor told us about it. We had no idea such an organization existed. We couldn’t believe all the people we met and all that we learned. The level of sharing that came from some of the giants in our industry had our heads spinning. I came home with reams of notes. It was great. Ned vividly remembers a lecture from Bill Jackson of Suite Interiors and he was so energized. I had a similar experience hearing Lee Curtis share the metrics his organization mined for tracking performance via customer surveys, occupancy reports, etc. It wasn’t just fluff but actual details. We were both impressed by the knowledge being shared in the educational sessions and in the networking.
What made you want to get involved in CHPA leadership?
I was approached by good friend Paul Bates, CCHP of Corporate Accommodations, who was on the nominating committee. I initially hesitated and told him I needed to think about it. I was a bit worried that I might not bring enough to the table. Also, my business partner and husband Ned Scharpf was president a few years back so I know firsthand this board doesn’t just dial it in and that it would be a serious time commitment. Ours is a relatively small business and I was a bit worried about any resulting absences from our company. However, when I really thought about it, Ned and Corporate Apartment Specialists both got back so much from his involvement, so it was well worth any time away from CAS. Our staff is also active at the committee/task force level. CHPA has always been the kind of organization where the more you give, the more you get back, whether at Board level or task force level. I remember the NY tax issue blowing up a few years back and CHPA didn’t just talk the talk but walked the walk by getting resources together and helping. That was groundbreaking. To be a small company and navigate the murky waters of regulation solo is scary. CHPA really is a lifeline for companies like ours. I hope to bring the voice of that small independent company to the board. It is also interesting to hear the thoughts of the multinationals. It is amazing that while we may seem different, many of the challenges are exactly the same.
How has CHPA membership been an asset to your company? To you?
This is a fabulous organization. How has CHPA membership been an asset to your company? To you? In the early days, we got a ton of knowledge on the nuts and bolts of our industry through amazing seminars and best practices sharing. It was fabulous to talk to peers in different markets about how they were handling challenges that we were facing in DC. As the years have progressed, we have made contacts that have turned into lifelong friendships. We also have forged relationships with companies nationwide that have translated to significant quantifiable revenue for CAS. During the initial downturn of 2009, an account resulting in multiple leases with another corporate housing customer saved our year. Our involvement in CHPA was directly responsible for the growth in that business relationship. We have gotten so much more than we could have ever hoped. Personally, I have met amazing friends but I have also been able to hone some public speaking skills that used to be very intimidating to me. Through this organization, I have been able to coordinate and facilitate numerous business networking lunches, one of the first regional conferences, and most recently, I represented CHPA at the Government Travel Advisory Committee about our industry, trends, etc. This has been great exposure for our company but also great professional development for me personally.
What other interesting information can you share with the association?
Ned and I may be the first husband-wife team that have served on Board. In addition to our involvement in corporate housing, we have ownership interests in 7 Value Place hotels. Value Place is a budget tier extended stay hotel. The hotels are located in South Carolina and Georgia. Unlike others in this market, CAS has always done a much higher proportionate share of studios than our competitors and we have always been in not just A but also B+ properties. With us the location is the major driver in inventory selection. CAS designed in-house our own turnover/operational software that has worked well for us for many years in lieu of some of the national products used. We are both CPA’s, so we tend toward the bottom line and toward profitability sometimes to the detriment of some sales-side deals. We like it that way. The old “how many units do you have?” question at conferences used to drive us nuts. It is more about how are you doing on the units you do have.