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City sends notice to business owners regarding collection of taxes

Last week, the City of North Myrtle Beach mailed a letter to all businesses located in the city limits instructing owners on how to handle taxes they collect from customers within the city.

The city sends out a notification annually but this year’s letter is different in that it directly addresses the fact that all of the taxes once split between the city and Horry County are to be remitted in full to the city.

The letter states that the City of North Myrtle Beach has revised its Local Accommodations Tax Ordinance as well as its Hospitality Tax Ordinance to capture the entire tax that has been split between the City of North Myrtle Beach and Horry County since 1997.

The tax was divided between the two governments as a result of an agreement between the city and the county that provided funding for road improvements under the Ride Project.  This agreement expired in 2017 when the debt for Ride I was paid in full.

The letter states that as of July 1, 2019, the Local Accommodations Tax of three percent, the Hospitality Tax of two percent, and the grandfathered Admissions of one percent will be paid to the City of North Myrtle Beach. Previously the city collected one and a half percent and the county collected one and a half percent on local accommodations and the City collected one percent and the County collected one and a half percent on hospitality (i.e., prepared meals, beverages and admissions) revenues.

Taxes collected within the corporate limits of the City of North Myrtle Beach will now be paid fully to the City of North Myrtle Beach.  This change does not reflect any increase in these taxes, but in fact is a decrease of a half percent in Hospitality Taxes with regard to meals and beverages.  The grandfathered Admissions remains at the one percent.

Businesses who received the letter and have questions are advised to contact the City’s Revenue Division at (843) 280-5585.

It is the city’s firm position, shared with other cities in Horry County, that state law does not allow one jurisdiction to collect such taxes within another jurisdiction, unless it has been authorized to do so by that jurisdiction. The city has not authorized Horry County to collect these taxes within the North Myrtle Beach city limits.

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