PART J. HOTEL AND MOTEL OCCUPANCY TAXES
§338.201. Hotel occupancy tax; Jefferson and Orleans parishes
A.(1) Except as provided in Subsection D of this Section, in addition to any other tax or assessment levied or authorized by law, the governing authorities of the parish of Jefferson and the parish of Orleans are hereby authorized and empowered to levy and collect a tax upon the paid occupancy of hotel rooms located within the respective parish. The hotel occupancy tax shall be one percent of the rent or fee charged for such occupancy.
(2) The word "hotel" as used in this Section shall mean and include any establishment engaged in the business of furnishing or providing rooms intended or designated for dwelling, lodging, or sleeping purposes to transient guests, where such establishment contains ten or more guest rooms. "Hotel" does not include any hospital, convalescent or nursing home or sanitarium, or hotel-like facility operated by or in connection with a hospital or medical clinic providing rooms exclusively for patients and their families.
(3) The hotel occupancy tax shall be paid by the person who exercises or is entitled to occupancy of the hotel room and shall be paid at the time the rent or fee for occupancy is paid. "Person" as used herein shall have the same definition as that contained in R.S. 47:301(8).
B. The governing authority shall impose the hotel occupancy tax by ordinance or resolution adopted by the governing authority which shall have the right to provide in the ordinance or resolution necessary and appropriate rules and regulations for the imposition, collection, and enforcement of the hotel occupancy tax. The resolution levying and imposing the hotel occupancy tax may not be adopted by the governing authority unless prior thereto the governing authority of the parish approves the levy of such hotel occupancy tax by a favorable vote of a majority of the members present and voting.
C. The governing authority shall have the right to contract with the state of Louisiana for the collection of the hotel occupancy tax authorized hereby. The hotel occupancy tax shall be in addition to all taxes presently being levied upon the occupancy of hotel rooms located in the parish.
D. No parish in which a hotel occupancy tax which levies a specific amount per occupied hotel room per night has previously been levied shall be authorized to levy a tax pursuant to this Section.
E. The net proceeds of the tax after the deduction of reasonable collection expenses shall be allocated or distributed by the governing authority as follows:
(1) All of the net proceeds of the tax collected from hotels located in unincorporated areas within the parish shall be allocated to the parish.
(2) Thirty percent of the net proceeds of the tax collected from hotels located in municipalities within the parish shall be distributed by the governing authority of the parish to the governing authority of such municipality; such monies shall be used by such municipalities solely for the purpose of funding tourism promotion. The remainder of such net proceeds shall be allocated to the parish.
F. Except as otherwise provided in Subsection E of this Section, the proceeds of the tax levied pursuant to this Section shall be used solely and exclusively to fund programs and projects concerning tourism related activities, including but not limited to, capital construction, equipment and supplies, tourism personnel, and advertising, or to fund bonds or other indebtedness issued for such tourism related activities in accordance with the provisions of Subsection G of this Section.
G.(1) As used in this Subsection, the following terms shall have the following meanings:
(a) "Governing authority" means the governing authority of the parish or municipality to whom the proceeds of the tax are distributed or allocated as provided for in Subsection E.
(b) "Issuer" means the governing authority in whose name bonds authorized hereunder are issued.
(c) "Resolution" means a resolution, ordinance, act or other appropriate legislative enactment of a governing authority.
(d) "Tax revenues" means the proceeds or avails of any tax imposed under the authority of this Section.
(2) The governing authority may, in the manner provided for in this Subsection, fund tax revenues into negotiable bonds.
(3) The governing authority may issue bonds from time to time solely and exclusively to fund programs and projects as provided for in Subsection E of this Section, such bonds to be payable solely from and secured by an irrevocable pledge and dedication of tax revenues subject only to the prior payment of the costs and expenses of administration and collection of such tax. The bonds shall have such form, characteristics, and details, be sold and be subject to the limitations and restrictions provided in this Subsection.
(4)(a) The bonds shall be authorized and issued by resolution of the governing authority and shall be of such series, bear such date or dates, mature at such time or times, beginning not more than three years after the date of the bonds and ending not later than twenty-five years after the date thereof, bear interest at such rate or rates payable at such times, be in such denomination, be in such form, either coupon or fully registered without coupons, carry such registration and exchangeability privileges, be payable in such medium and at such place or places within or without the state, be subject to such terms of redemption, be entitled to such priorities on the tax revenues and be sold upon such terms not inconsistent herewith as such resolution may provide.
(b) The bonds shall be executed in the name of the parish or municipality by the manual or facsimile signatures of such official or officials of the parish or municipality as designated by the governing authority in the resolution authorizing their issuance. At least one signature on each bond shall be a manual signature. The seal, or a facsimile thereof, of such parish or municipality shall be affixed, imprinted, engraved, or otherwise reproduced upon each bond.
(c) The delivery of any bonds or coupons so executed at any time thereafter shall be valid, although before the date of delivery, any person or persons signing the bonds or coupons shall cease to hold office. The maturities of the bonds shall be so arranged that the total amount of principal and interest falling due in any year, together with principal and interest falling due in such year on all bonds theretofore issued hereunder, and then outstanding, shall never exceed seventy-five percent of the amount of tax revenues estimated by the governing authority to be received by it in the calendar year in which the bonds are issued.
(5)(a) Bonds issued hereunder shall constitute a borrowing solely upon the credit of the tax revenues received or to be received by the governing authority of the issuer and shall not constitute an indebtedness or pledge of the general credit of the issuer within the meaning of any constitutional or statutory provision relating to the incurring of indebtedness, and the bonds shall contain a recital to that effect. No member of the governing authority or officer of the issuer or any person executing the bonds shall be personally liable on such bonds.
(b) Bonds issued hereunder shall be payable solely from and secured by an irrevocable pledge and dedication of such part of the tax revenues as may be pledged thereto in the authorizing resolution. Any holder of any of such bonds, or coupons attached thereto, may either at law or in equity, by suit, action, mandamus, or other proceedings, enforce and compel performance of all duties required to be performed by the governing authority as a result of issuing the bonds and may similarly enforce the provisions of the ordinance or other enactment of the governing authority imposing the tax and the resolution and proceedings authorizing the issuance of such bonds.
(c) When any bonds shall have been issued hereunder neither the legislature, the governing authority, nor any other authority shall discontinue or decrease the tax or permit to be discontinued or decreased the tax in anticipation of the collection of which such bonds have been issued, or in any way make any change in the allocation and dedication of the proceeds of such tax which would diminish the amount of the tax revenues to be received by the issuer until all of such bonds shall have been retired as to principal and interest, and there is hereby vested in the holders from time to time of such bonds and the coupons representing interest thereon a contractual right under the provisions of this Subpart.
(6)(a) The governing authority may in any resolution authorizing such bonds provide for the respective priorities of its separate blocks, series, or issues of bonds issued hereunder, and may provide for the issuance of additional bonds in the future on a parity therewith pursuant to such procedure or restrictions as may be specified in such resolution. In the absence of such provision, if more than one series of bonds shall be issued hereunder payable from the same tax revenues, priority of lien on such revenues shall depend on the time of the delivery of such bonds, each series enjoying a lien prior and superior to that enjoyed by any series of bonds subsequently delivered, except that as to any issue or series of bonds which may be authorized as a unit but delivered from time to time in blocks, the governing authority may in the proceedings authorizing the issuance of such bonds provide that all of the bonds of such series or issue shall be coequal as to lien regardless of the time of delivery; provided that nothing herein stated shall vest in any holder of bonds any right of lien or priority of any kind against any part of the tax revenues not pledged to the payment of the bonds by the proceedings authorizing the issuance thereof.
(b) Any resolution may contain such covenants with the future holder or holders of the bonds as to the tax revenues, the disposition of such revenues, the issuance of future bonds, and such other pertinent matters as may be deemed necessary by the governing authority to assure the marketability of such bonds, provided such covenants are not inconsistent with the provisions of this Section.
(c) Any resolution authorizing the issuance of bonds hereunder may contain such provisions to assure the enforcement, collection, and proper application of the tax revenues as the governing authority may think proper, where not inconsistent with the provisions of this Section, and when any bonds payable from the tax revenues shall have been issued, this Section, the ordinance or other enactment of the governing authority imposing the tax and pursuant to which the tax is being collected, and the obligation of the governing authority to continue to levy, collect, and allocate the tax, and to apply the revenues derived therefrom in accordance with the provisions of said ordinance or other enactment, shall be irrevocable until such bonds have been paid in full as to principal and interest, and shall not be subject to amendment in any manner which would impair the rights of the holders from time to time of such bonds or which would in any way jeopardize the prompt payment of principal thereof or interest thereon.
(7)(a)(i) Bonds issued hereunder may be sold at either private, negotiated sale, or public sale on sealed bids in the manner provided in R.S. 39:1426.
(ii) Bonds issued pursuant to this Section may also be issued as provided for in Chapter 13 of Title 39 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes of 1950.
(b) The proceeds derived from the sale of bonds issued hereunder shall be used exclusively by the issuer for the purpose or purposes authorized to be issued as provided for in Subsection F of this Section, but the purchasers of the bonds shall not be obligated to see to the application of the proceeds.
(8)(a) Before bonds are issued hereunder, the governing authority shall investigate and determine the regularity of the proceedings. The resolution authorizing the bonds may direct that they contain the following recital:
"It is certified that this bond is authorized by and is issued in conformity with the requirements of the constitution and statutes of this state."
(b) Such recital shall be deemed to be an authorized declaration of the governing authority and to import that there is constitutional and statutory authority for issuing the bonds and imposing the tax; that all the proceedings therefor are regular; that all acts, conditions, and things required to exist, happen, and be performed precedent to and in the issuance of the bonds and imposition of the tax have existed, have happened and have been performed in due time, form, and manner as required by law; that the amount of the bonds, together with all other indebtedness of the issuer does not exceed any limit or limits prescribed by the constitution or statutes of this state; and that the required notices have been duly and regularly given by publication in the manner required by law. If any bonds are issued containing the above recital, the same shall be construed according to the import herein declared, and it shall be conclusively presumed that the recital is true, and neither the governing authority nor any taxpayer shall be permitted to question the validity or regularity of the bonds, obligations or tax in any court or in any action or proceeding.
(9) After the time within which the validity of the bonds may be contested has elapsed as provided for in Paragraph (13) of this Subsection, the bonds shall be registered with the secretary of state without charge and shall have endorsed thereon a legend substantially as follows:
"Incontestable. Secured by a pledge and dedication of a sales and use tax in ____________________. Registered this __________ day of ____________________, 19____.
SECRETARY OF STATE"
(10) All bonds issued under the provisions of this Section and the interest thereon shall be exempt from all taxation in the state of Louisiana. The bonds may be used for deposit with any officer, board, municipality, or other political subdivision of the state of Louisiana in any case where deposit of security is required.
(11)(a) The provisions of this Section shall be construed as cumulative authority for the exercise of the powers herein granted. The powers conferred by this Section shall not be affected or limited by any other provision of any statute of the state, and no provision, publication, election, or right of referendum shall be required or afforded in the performance of any act herein authorized to be done, including the imposition, collection, and application of the tax and issuance of bonds payable therefrom, except as herein otherwise specifically provided.
(b) However, in accomplishing the purposes and programs provided for in Subsection F of this Section, the governing authority is hereby authorized and empowered to utilize all of the types of securities, devices, procedures, and methods of borrowing or securing provided for tax revenues in Title 39 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes of 1950 when issuing indebtedness and otherwise using the tax revenue provided for in this Section. The bonds issued may be issued, re-issued, advertised, sold, secured, enhanced, refunded, defeased, or otherwise utilized, and the tax revenues may be used in any manner according to any procedure provided for in that Title for governing authorities; provided that such use accomplishes the programs provided for in Subsection F of this Section.
(12) Bonds issued hereunder shall have all the qualities of negotiable paper and shall constitute negotiable instruments under the negotiable instruments law of the state of Louisiana. They shall not be invalid for any irregularity or defect in the proceedings for the issuance and sale thereof and shall be incontestable in the hands of bona fide purchasers or holders for value.
(13)(a)(i) The resolution authorizing the issuance of the bonds hereunder and pledging and dedicating tax revenues to the payment thereof shall be recorded in the mortgage records of the parish in which the issuer is located and shall be published in one issue of the official journal of the parish or municipality; however, it shall not be necessary to publish any exhibits to such resolution if the same are available for public inspection and such fact is stated in the publication.
(ii) Within thirty days after the date of publication, any person in interest may contest the legality of the tax levied and of the resolution, any provisions in the resolution made for the security and payment of the bonds to be issued pursuant to it, and the validity of all other provisions and proceedings relating to the authorization and issuance of such bonds and the levy of the taxes.
(iii) If no action or proceeding is instituted within the thirty days, no person shall have any cause of action to test the regularity, formality, legality, or effectiveness of the levy of the tax and of the resolution, any provisions of the bonds to be issued pursuant to the resolution, the provisions for the security and payment of the bonds, and the validity of all other provisions and proceedings relating to the authorization and issuance of the bonds and the levy of the tax, for any cause whatsoever and it shall be conclusively presumed that every legal requirement for the issuance of the bonds and the levy of the tax has been complied with and that the bonds and tax are legal. Thereafter, no court shall have authority to inquire into any of such matters.
(b) Any action or proceeding instituted by a person in interest or by the parish shall be in accord with the procedures of Part XVI of Chapter 32 of Title 13 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes of 1950.
Acts 1989, No. 265, §1, eff. June 26, 1989; Acts 1990, No. 33, §1, eff. June 20, 1990; Acts 2011, 1st Ex. Sess., No. 20, §1, eff. June 12, 2011; Redesignated from R.S. 33:2740.18 pursuant to Acts 2011, No. 248, §4.