* 1202-l. Hotel or motel taxes in Niagara Falls. (1) Notwithstanding any other provisions of law to the contrary, the city of Niagara Falls is hereby authorized and empowered to adopt and amend local laws imposing in such city a tax in addition to any tax authorized and imposed pursuant to this article such as the legislature has or would have the power and authority to impose on persons occupying hotel and motel rooms in such city. The rate of such tax shall be five per centum (5%) per day of the rent or charge for each room; provided, however, such tax shall not be applicable to a permanent resident of a hotel. For the purposes of this section, the term "permanent resident" shall mean a person occupying any room or rooms in a hotel for at least thirty consecutive days.
(2) Such tax may be collected and administered by the comptroller of the city of Niagara Falls by such means and in such manner as other taxes which are now collected and administered by such officers as provided by local law.
(3) Such local laws may provide that any tax imposed shall be paid by the person liable therefor to the owner of the hotel room occupied or to the person entitled to be paid the rent or charge for the hotel room occupied for and on account of the city of Niagara Falls imposing the tax and that such owner or person entitled to be paid the rent or charge shall be liable for the collection and payment of the tax; and that such owner or person entitled to be paid the rent or charge shall have the same right in respect to collecting the tax from the person occupying the hotel room, or in respect to nonpayment of the tax by the person occupying the hotel room, as if the tax were a part of the rent or charge and payable at the same time as the rent or charge; provided, however, that the city comptroller of the city of Niagara Falls shall be joined as a party in any action or proceeding brought to collect the tax by the owner or by the person entitled to be paid the rent or charge.
(4) Such local laws may provide for the filing of returns and the payment of the tax on a monthly basis or on the basis of any longer or shorter period of time. Such returns shall be filed within twenty days from the expiration of the period covered.
(5) This section shall not authorize the imposition of such tax upon the following:
a. The state of New York, or any public corporation (including a pub- lic corporation created pursuant to agreement or compact with another state or the Dominion of Canada), improvement district or other political subdivision of the state;
b. The United States of America, insofar as it is immune from taxation;
c. The United Nations or other world-wide international organization of which the United States is a member; and
d. Any corporation, or association, or trust, or community chest, fund or foundation, organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable, or educational purposes, or for the prevention of cruelty to children or animals, and no part of the net earnings of which inures to the benefit of any private shareholder or individual and no substantial part of the activities of which is carrying on propaganda, or otherwise attempting to influence legislation; provided, however, that nothing in this paragraph shall include an organization operated for the primary purpose of carrying on a trade or business for profit, whether or not all of its profits are payable to one or more organizations described in this paragraph.
(6) Any final determination of the amount of any tax payable hereunder shall be reviewable for error, illegality or unconstitutionality or any other reason whatsoever by a proceeding under article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules if application therefor is made to the supreme court within thirty days after the giving of the notice of such final determination, provided, however, that any such proceeding under article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules shall not be instituted unless (a) the amount of any tax sought to be reviewed, with such interest and penalties thereon as may be provided for by local law or regulation, shall be first deposited and there is filed an undertaking, issued by a surety company authorized to transmit business in this state and approved by the superintendent of financial services of this state as to solvency and responsibility, in such amount as a justice of the supreme court shall approve to the effect that if such proceeding be dismissed or the tax confirmed the petitioner will pay all costs and charges which may accrue in the prosecution of such proceeding or (b) at the option of the petitioner such undertaking may be in a sum sufficient to cover the taxes, interest and penalties stated in such determination plus the costs and charges which may accrue against it in the prosecution of the proceedings in which event the petitioner shall not be required to pay such taxes, interest or penalties as a condition precedent to the application.
(7) Where any tax imposed hereunder shall have been erroneously, illegally or unconstitutionally collected and application for the refund thereof duly made to the proper fiscal officer or officers, and such officer or officers shall have made a determination denying such refund, such determination shall be reviewable by a proceeding under article seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules, provided, however, that such proceeding is instituted within thirty days after the giving of the notice of such denial, that a final determination of tax due was not previously made, and that an undertaking is filed with the proper fiscal officer or officers in such amount and with such sureties as a justice of the supreme court shall approve to the effect that if such proceeding be dismissed or the tax confirmed, the petitioner will pay all costs and charges which may accrue in the prosecution of such proceeding.
(8) Except in the case of a wilfully false or fraudulent return with intent to evade the tax, no assessment of additional tax shall be made after the expiration of more than three years from the date of the filing of a return, provided, however, that where no return has been filed as provided by law the tax may be assessed at any time.
(9) Revenues resulting from the imposition of tax authorized by this act shall be paid into the treasury of the city of Niagara Falls and shall be credited to and deposited in the general fund account of such city and shall be used only for the promotion of convention activities and tourism as follows: (a) from the first four percentum (4%), eighty percent of such revenue from this tax shall be allocated and paid to a not-for-profit corporation under contract with the county for the promotion of tourism in the county; fifteen percent of such revenue shall be retained by the city of Niagara Falls for any city purpose; and the remaining five percent of said first four percentum (4%) of revenue shall be retained by the city of Niagara Falls for administration and collection costs; (b) the additional one percentum (1%) of such revenue from this tax shall be dedicated to the continuation of a trolley service for the purpose of transporting guests of hotels and motels to area tourism attractions. The terms "convention activities" and "tourism" may be defined by a resolution of the city council of the city of Niagara Falls.
(10) If any provision of this section or the application thereof to any person or circumstance shall be held invalid, the remainder of this section and the application of such provision to other persons or circumstances shall not be affected thereby.
* NB There are 4 1202-l's
Last modified: September 11, 2016