In Canada, many provincial and local governments have various forms of accommodation/hotel taxes. Typically the tax ranges between 1% and 5%, and is applied to the price of one night of accommodation.
In many instances, the revenue from these taxes is earmarked for local tourism initiatives or for a local tourism board. Increasingly, First Nations are involving hotel properties as a part of their overall commercial development strategy, and therefore an accommodation/hotel tax provides for significant fiscal benefits.
The FNTC is currently proposing standards that would apply to business activity tax laws that provide for a tax on business operators providing accommodation on reserve.
While similar to accommodation taxes or hotel taxes levied by provincial and local governments, the First Nation Accommodation Operator Business Activity Tax Law is distinguished by its application; it is a tax on the accommodation operator, and not on the consumer of accommodation.
Accommodation would include lodging at hotels, motels, resorts, and other lodging establishments included in the First Nation’s law that meet minimum requirements reflected in section 3.3 of the proposed Standards (i.e., accommodation must be for a period less than 28 days of consecutive lodging, lodging charges must be greater than $30 per day or $210 per week, and the operator must offer more than four units of lodging).
The FNTC is seeking public input in respect of these proposed Standards. If you wish to learn more, please contact the FNTC at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at (250) 828-9857. Electronic versions of the proposed Standards are available here.