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  • March 03, 2023 1:28 PM | Anonymous

    Third Time, Not Charming 

    The third draft of Hawaii County’s proposed regulations is out.  It is even worse for homeowners, service providers and affordable housing than the first draft.

    If you do nothing else this week, please do these two things:

    1. Sign the petition.  Our original goal was to get 500 signatures.  We’ve crushed that goal and are aiming for 1,000.  Be sure to share the petition with any other owners, service providers or supporters you might know.

    2. Please take 5 minutes and help us understand your role in the vacation rental industry.  We are going to use your response to help us accurately draft correspondence to Hawaii Lawmakers. 

    <Too Long, Didn’t Read>


    Petition Progress

    We soft launched our petition a couple weeks ago and passed the 500 signature goal immediately.  We’re now aiming for 1,000.  Please sign our petition and share it with service providers, friends and family members who might be affected by additional restrictions on our industry.

    Third Draft of Regulations

    Counselor’s Kimball and Kierkiewicz have released a 3rd draft of proposed regulations on homestays and farmstays.  For some reason the 3rd draft is even worse for families than the first two.  Take a look at our analysis.

    Open Letter For Publication in Local Newspapers

    We are publishing an open letter in the local newspapers and online news sources.  This is going to be quite expensive.  If your business is going well and you want to protect it from government overreach, please consider making a $100 donation.

    State Wide Coordination

    We are now coordinating our efforts at the state level with all major vacation rental platforms as well as grassroots organizations on Maui and Oahu.  One of the participants in this effort has developed a dashboard to track state laws that might impact our businesses.

    As near as we can tell, all of the really threatening state laws were abandoned in committee, but it is clear that the “bad idea fairy” has a long term engagement in the Hawaii Statehouse.  We’ll keep you informed about future bills and we will reach out when testimony would be useful.

    The Real Cause of the Affordable Housing Crisis

    Affordable housing is the reason lawmakers have cited as the motive to heavily regulate our industry.  The County’s review of their affordable housing program was published and it’s brutal.  The report found serious problems across the board with the County’s affordable housing program including embezzlement, lack of record keeping, pre-awarded affordable housing credits and a host of other issues.

    Homestays and Farmstays are not causing the affordable housing crisis and eliminating them will not solve it.  In fact, by taking away nearly $400,000,000 in homestay revenue the county will make it impossible for those of us in the industry to make ends meet.

    This legislation targets our operations under the guise of “creating affordable housing”  We need to be sure to clearly communicate what the real problem is - corruption, incompetence and overly burdensome building regulations.  Politicians want to scapegoat our industry to distract from the real issues, we need to put an end to that.

  • February 13, 2023 5:29 PM | Anonymous

    Opposing HB-84 - A Bill Giving Hawaii County the Power to Retroactively Ban Vacation Rentals

    If you only do one thing this week please take a minute to submit testimony to the State House about House Bill 84.

    <Too Long/Didn’t Read>

    • The State House of Representatives has proposed a bill that would allow Hawaii County to retroactively eliminate non-conforming uses and effectively shut down the entire vacation rental industry.
    • Hawaii County has yet to respond to our $10,000 offer to fund a study of the effects of hosted rentals on the local housing market.  We are going to expire the offer after another week.
    • Heather Kimball and Ashley Kierkiewicz have been promising a new draft of the Hawaii County bill since early January, but as of this writing no draft has become available.  We will let you know when a revised draft is available.
    • I’ve been asked to do several interviews over the past couple of months including one with Think Tech Hawaii that might be worth a look. Hopefully I’m carrying our message in an honest and accessible way.
    • Petition Soft Launch - We’ve soft launched a petition.   Once we get 500 signatures we'll promote it more broadly.  Please sign up early to help us build momentum.


    House Bill 84 - Giving Hawaii County More Power

    Today we are protected by State and Federal law that restricts Hawaii County’s ability to shut down our businesses, but HB 84 changes that.  This bill would grant counties the power to retroactively revoke non-conforming use certificates to make vacation rentals illegal.

    If anyone doubts that there is a consistency that wants us fully shut down and doesn’t care at all about our ability to make a living then you haven’t been paying attention.

    The last thing we need is a county with more power.  I’m headed to Oahu to testify in person, but I’d like to urge you to please submit testimony in opposition to changes that give Hawaii County more power over us.

    Studying the Effects of Hosted Vacation Rentals

    In 2018 Hawaii County passed regulations that banned new un-hosted short term rentals, regulated existing short term rentals and created a new bureaucracy for managing the industry.  The justification for this effort?  Affordable housing.

    Five years later the county is proposing new regulations, fees and bureaucratic roadblocks for the industry under the same justification.  Affordable Housing. 

    But what were the effects of the first effort?  Is there more housing now than there was then?  What have been the impacts on families who depend on rental income?  Has their housing situation improved? 

    To answer these questions we offered to match Hawaii County $10,000 to conduct an independent study of the effects of the 2018 law and the potential impacts of the new legislation. 

    To date we have not received a response.   This raises the question: What is the county afraid of?  If our industry truly is the cause of the affordable housing crisis ( it isn’t ) and does not’ benefit local families ( it does ) then why not conduct an independent study to confirm that hypothesis before launching into an onerous, divisive and expensive legislative process?

    This week I’ll put an expiration date on the offer and, if they refuse to conduct a study, we’ll be sure to bring that up as the bill moves through the County Counsel and mayor’s office.

    New Draft Hawaii County Bill

    The draft of the Hawaii County bill provided November 20 had a significant number of problems.

    In addition to many of the issues we’ve brought up here it was clearly in violation of recent court decisions at both the State and Federal level.

    Over the past two months we’ve been working hard to provide positive feedback on the bill and have been promised a new draft that solves many of the problems we’ve brought forward.  So where is it?  We’ve been promised a draft numerous times and it has failed to appear, but when it does we’ll be sure to give you a complete rundown of its impacts on our community.

    Petition Soft Launch

    We’re circulating a petition to send to Hawaii County regarding the proposed county legislation, please consider signing on and having your service providers sign on as well.  There are thousands of us who depend on vacation rental income to make ends meet.  Lets be sure to let Hawaii County know that.

    We're aiming for 500 signatures before we broadly promote it.  Please sign on today.

  • January 26, 2023 5:34 PM | Anonymous

    Rather than a update this week I'm publishing an open letter to Heather Kimball and Ashley Kierkiewicz about the justification for further regulating hosted vacation rentals here on the Big Island.

    In this letter our organization is committing $10,000 in matching funds for an independent peer reviewed study of hosted rentals and their impact on obtainable housing.  This commitment is contingent on Hawaii County pausing this legislative process until the study is commissioned, conducted, completed and peer reviewed.

    Quality investigation leads to quality legislation.

  • January 20, 2023 5:35 PM | Anonymous

    If you only do one thing this week, please be sure to attend the information session tonight at 5 PM.

    [ Too Long, Didn’t Read ]

    • There is an information session tonight at 5 PM about the proposed regulations. Be there, comment in the chat, provide feedback if allowed.
    • VRBO sent an email message. We are now planning local feedback sessions. We need volunteers to help organize them.
    • 2022 Financial Statements are now available.

    [ /TLDR ]

    Information Session Tonight - Log In, Comment

    Counselors Kimbell and Kierkiewicz are holding an information session on the County’s plan to regulate and, in some cases, eliminate hosted vacation rental operations here on the Big Island.

    If this meeting follows the format of the November 20th meeting their will not be any forum for meaningful discussion. It is purely to inform the public what they plan to do, not to give the public an opportunity to tell them why they shouldn’t do it.

    This one sided approach to information sharing prevents meaningful engagement about the impact this bill will have on the incomes and home values of thousands of families.  It is intended to calm us.

    We are encouraging members of the public to make use of the chat feature to provide timely feedback to the proposal. We are also planning in-person listening sessions sometime in the next several weeks where members of the public will be able to voice their concerns. Both Counselors have agreed, in principle, to attend.

    You are supposed to register individually here, but since many folks won’t have time to do this in advance I’m providing my personal link as well. If you use my personal link you will show up with my name so please don’t do or say anything that I’ll have to apologize for later.

    VRBO Email

    VRBO sent out a nice email message this week pointing hosts to our group. As a result we’ve added dozens of new members.

    I’ve also been put in touch with the public affairs team at AirBnB.

    Now that we have a path to communicate with most of the industry we will be planning public feedback sessions which both sponsors of this bill have agreed, in principle, to attend.

    We will host the Kona event on our farm, but need hosts in Puna, Hilo and Waimea. If you can help organize one of these sessions it would be much appreciated. If you’ve already volunteered and I missed your email, please reach out again.

    2022 Financial Statements

    In keeping with our core principle of transparency here is our 2022 profit and loss statement as well as a balance sheet.

    We are rapidly adding members and are working to build a sustainable revenue stream so we can bring on part time staff and start participating in local elections, but we’re not quite there yet. If you haven’t already joined, please consider becoming a paid member. We all count on rental revenue and this is a good investment to protect that revenue from government overreach.

  • January 13, 2023 5:37 PM | Anonymous

    If you only do one thing this week, please sign up for and attend Hawaii County's webinar January 20 and be sure to weigh in with your opinion in the chat window.

    <Too Long, Didn't Read>
    Platforms Reached - If things go to plan we’ll send our first email to all hosts on the island next week.
    County Publishes Sketchy Website - It turns out there were practically no complaints about vacation rentals.
    Counselors Hold Webinar - Please plan on attending.
    Petition to Launch - We are launching a petition drive.
    County Reacting to Input - The justification for this bill is changing because of our efforts.

    Platform Reached

    We have had several nice conversations with the team at VRBO over the past two weeks and, if things go as planned, they are sending an email blast on our behalf early next week. They will be sharing our video and promoting our group as much as they can within their brand guidelines.

    County Publishes Sketchy Website and Confirms: There Have Been Practically No Complaints About Vacation Rentals

    In response to all of the emails, phone calls, meeting requests and pushback from the community, Heather Kimball has published an unofficial Hawaii County website promoting the proposal.  Well, we think it is Heather, but.....

    I’m not linking it here because it doesn't have a privacy policy, doesn’t list contact information for the site owner, the SSL certificate contains no organization information and it asks for the reader's name and email address. It could be an effort by hackers or an industry group to influence this legislation.

    But assuming it is legitimate… item that stands out is that there have been very few complaints about vacation rental operators here on the Island.

    The site claims that there are 4,441 registered vacation rentals and points out that hosted rentals are not registered. That means there were 1,691,000 rental nights available at registered vacation rentals last year.

    The number of complaints received? 65.

    This works out to a complaint rate of %0.000062.

    To address these complaints Hawaii County is demanding thousands of dollars in fees, floor plans of homes, adding additional work to an already overburdened planning department and threatening the livelihood of thousands of operators and service providers.

    Counselors Holding Additional Webinar

    Counselor Kimball and Kierkiewicz are holding another webinar on this issue on January 20. The format is likely to be the same as the one in November.

    I encourage our members to attend, but to keep in mind that the goal of the proponents of this bill is to reduce opposition. The content and tone is likely to be conciliatory. At the end of the day the only thing that matters is the language of the bill as written. According to our analysis the current language has the potential to put a lot of families in financial trouble.

    If you attend I encourage you to make your thoughts on the bill clear in the Zoom comments. These will be seen by all participants and give you the opportunity to communicate your thoughts. Be kind and be honest, but also persistent and vocal.


    We plan to launch the petition this week in concert with the VRBO message. When that happens we will be asking our members to circulate it widely.

    County Reacting to Community Input

    All of the emails, calls, meetings and efforts are definitely paying dividends. The County has been reacting to our messaging and has already started to change the language they are using to describe the bill.

    That said, the language of the bill itself does not appear to have changed significantly and ultimately that is what matters.

    On her constituent communication call November 29 Heather Kimball indicated that the two drivers of this bill were complaints and affordable housing. Zendo Kern confirmed this in his communications with West Hawaii Today. Now that it is clear that there were practically no complaints the justification has changed. In the unofficial website Kimball cites two reasons:

    “First, the bill is meant to ensure that all TAR operations in Hawaii County are legal, safe,and followingstandards(sic) of operation so that they are not disruptive to the neighborhoods where they are located.”

    Lets unpack that.

    “Legal” - Hosted TARs are already legal. They would only become illegal if this bill passes and people can’t or won’t register.

    “Safe” - The County already has a byzantine permitting and planning process that ensures construction is safe and legal.

    “Following Standards of Operation” - Almost all vacation rentals use technology platforms with well developed standards for safety, financial security and physical security. These platforms have a reputation system for customer feedback and dedicated teams who address conflicts and violations of standards. Is Hawaii County saying that they can do it better?

    “So that they are not disruptive of neighborhoods” - Hawaii County received 65 complaints for over 1,691,000 rental nights. That is a complaint rate of %0.000062. Evidence shows that TARs are not disruptive in any meaningful way.

    “The second reason for the bill is the due to the impact that TARs have on the housing market. TARs reduce the inventory of housing available for residents and increase area housing costs and rents. Hawaii County has a significant problem with the availability of housing and this bill is intended to reduce speculation by outside investors on our island.”

    “TARs reduce the inventory of housing available for residents and increase area housing costs and rents.” - The county has admitted that they have commissioned no studies, conducted no research and developed no data on the impact of hosted TARs on affordable housing.

    The hosted TARs that this bill targets are operated by owners or renters who live on the property. They use the vacation rental income to pay their rent and their mortgage.

    7,500 families count on this income to make ends meet every month. Making it harder for these kama aina to pay their bills is going to result in people losing their housing.

    This bill will reduce affordable housing.

    “Hawaii County has a significant problem with the availability of housing” - One of Hawaii County’s key affordable housing employees embezzled $11,000,000 of affordable housing credits for his own personal gain. Perhaps Hawaii County should address this issue internally before disrupting the livelihood of thousands of Hawaii families.

    “this bill is intended to reduce speculation by outside investors on our island.” - Once again Kimball conflates absentee owned rentals ( which are ALREADY regulated ) with hosted rentals - local families who rent a room or an ohana to visitors. This bill is not about outside investors.

    In fact, this bill may increase the number of outside investor owned properties. Families forced to sell their property because of this bill are very likely to find buyers on the mainland or internationally.

  • December 22, 2022 3:53 PM | Anonymous

    If you only do one thing this week please share this video across all of your social media.

    This week we made good progress on getting our message through to our elected representatives.  I met with Mayor Roth, Heather Kimball and Dr. Holeka Inaba. All three conversations were very productive.

    <Too Long, Didn’t Read>

    • Rumor Mitigation - Nothing nefarious is going on.  The political process is playing out as per-usual and we have ample opportunity to succeed within it.
    • Platform Involvement - VRBO has agreed in principle to send out communications on our behalf.  We need to get ready for it.
    • Alternative Bill - We’ve drafted an alternative bill.  Give it a read and provide comments to Jennifer if you have any.
    • Direct Action - We took our first direct action this week with mixed results.
    • Items of Concern - Our industry runs the risk of being scapegoated unfairly as the cause of the affordable housing crisis in Hawaii.  We need to get better at telling our story if we want to avoid that outcome.


    Rumor Mitigation

    I’ve been talking to a lot of elected officials and I want to put a few rumors to bed.

    1. “This legislation is an ambush on our businesses.” - Heather and Ashley put this legislation out into the community months ahead of introducing it.  If you look at how other legislation has been proposed recently you’ll see that this is not the norm.  They are honestly interested in feedback and I believe they are listening to our message.  

    That said, they can’t get our message if we aren’t broadcasting it so make sure you write them and let them know what you think.

    2. “The legislation seeks to reduce homestays and farmstays in favor of the hotel industry.” - While lobbyists from the hotel industry may be working to restrict competition at both the state and local level, nothing I’ve seen indicates that this is the primary motivation for this bill.

    If lobbyists for the hotel industry are taking action they are most likely promoting the story that homestays and vacation rentals take away from affordable housing.  This seems to be a story that resonates with lawmakers.

    To combat this story we need to stand up and demonstrate that vacation rental income is critical to local families who use it to offset the extreme cost of living here in Hawai’i.  Far from reducing housing availability, the revenue from this industry makes it possible for families to purchase and maintain their homes.

    The best way to tell our story today is to provide a video testimonial to Ryan Leese who is working to create video messaging that tells our story.  A testimonial only takes a few minutes to create and, as you can see in this weeks video, sends a powerful message.  Take a minute and contact Ryan today.

    Platform Involvement

    Expedia ( VRBO ) reached out to us proactively a few weeks ago and I was finally able to circle back and connect with them.  They’ve indicated a willingness to consider sending an email blast to all of the hosts on the Big Island on our behalf.

    We’re anticipating this email will go out in the second week of January so we need to get ready for it.

    Among the actions we need to take:

    1. Polish up our video story(s) so it can be part of the message.
    2. Provide logistical support for listening sessions with Heather, Ashley and the broader community.  The email blast will promote these sessions and ensure they are well attended.  We need to book venues, promote the meetings, provide snacks and attend them in force.
    3. Further refine our definition of the bill so that the general public can understand it.  We will do so honestly, but also in a way that clearly communicates our concerns.

      Short one-page fliers will go further than multi-page detailed analysis, so lets work on creating a concise and honest assessment of what this bill means to our industry, our businesses and our families.
    4. Get our website and messaging configured to recruit paying members.

    We really need folks to step up and take the role of community leaders to help organize their local listening sessions.  If you’re willing to step up, please send me a note:

    Redline Bill

    Several of our members have been working on an alternate bill that addresses Hawai’i County’s concerns while preserving our right to earn a living.  Chief among them is Jennifer Wilkinson who has done a lion's share of the work.

    Here are links to both the redlined version and a more readable alternate version of this bill.  We’d love to see folks commenting on this in the Ohana Aina Association members forum.  If you’re a member, please log in and give us your viewpoint.  If you are not a member please join.  The dues are very reasonable and we need all the help we can get.

    Direct Action

    We took our first direct action this week by attending Heather Kimball’s talk story session en-mass.  Her call usually only has a half dozen attendees.  We brought more than 40.

    The action was a partial success.  Everyone was polite and I think we made our voices heard, but there were far less of us than is really needed to make our point by numbers.

    Part of this failing is the late notice.  I only sent out the details 2 hours before the meeting and our Facebook group is locked which makes it difficult to message people over social media.

    That said, our group is too small.  There are more than 7,000 families that could be impacted by this bill.  In my household alone we have six: my core family, may farm hand’s family and four cleaning staff’s families.  That is for two addresses.

    We need to do a better job recruiting owners, but also - critically - activating service providers who depend on vacation rental operations as part of their income.

    Items of Concern

    Gov. Green recently appointed Nani Mederios to the state’s new chief of housing and she has indicated a desire to convert vacation rentals into long term housing.  There are a number of ways to do this including enforcing current rules, providing incentives to vacation rental operators and streamlining permitting of density enhancing conversions from un-hosted floorplans to hosted floorplans.  Unfortunately those solutions take resources, consensus building and changes to the bureaucracy.

    Simply attempting to villainize and outlaw our industry is the easy path.

    I’m concerned that without a strong voice at the state level telling the stories of families who are service providers for our industry, hosted operators in our neighborhoods it is easy to make us a scapegoat for systematic failures of leadership.

    To combat this approach we need to organize at the state level and work hard to tell our story to lawmakers who might not understand that many of those 25,000 “illegal” operators are simply families trying to make ends meet in one of the most expensive places on earth.

  • December 20, 2022 5:39 PM | Anonymous

    In last week’s update we indicated that Heather Kimball is hosting a talk story event at 9 AM on December 20 via Zoom and we are encouraging everyone to attend.

    Please remember to enter your full name and be kind, courteous and honest. We are not against anyone. We are for our right to participate in the local economy.

    Meeting ID: 895 1338 3304

    Attend today.

  • November 24, 2022 1:10 PM | Anonymous

    On November 21, 2022 County Counselors Heather Kimball and Ashley Kierkiewicz presented a fully formed policy that, if adopted, would radically harm more than 7,500 families here on the Big Island.

    Among the most potentially harmful consequences of the bill as written:

    • Cuts off an important path that many kama'aina have used to become home owners.

    • Completely bans people from renting ohanas for less than 180 days.
    • Provides no path for farmers to participate in the visitor economy.
    • Creates insurmountable hurdles for kama'aina who rent a single room.
    • Contains egregiously large fines ( $10,000 per day )
    • Attempts to fix long standing problems with the permitting department at the expense of homeowners.
    • Eliminates jobs for service providers like cleaners, maintenance people, farm hands and managers.

    The underlying cause of these problems is a processes that is fundamentally broken and unfair.  Counselors Kimball and Kierkiewicz have drafted this bill without input from homeowners, service providers, farmers or others.
    First off, rewind.  A bill affecting the livelihood of 7,500 families needs more public input, socialization and collaboration than a bill authorizing a change in parking regulations.  Tens of thousands of people are going to be financially affected by this bill.  Let's start from scratch and get it right.

    To fix the bill the counselors need to rewind and listen:

    Rewind:  A bill affecting the livelihood of 7,500 families needs more public input, socialization and collaboration than a bill authorizing a change in parking regulations.  Tens of thousands of people are going to be financially affected by this bill.  Let's start from scratch and get it right.

    Listen: to the people who are going to be affected by this bill before drafting it.  And then draft it collaboratively.  People who host transient accommodations are experts in the economics, practicalities and impact of vacation rentals.  The County is not.  The County wouldn’t seek to regulate the automotive industry without consulting automakers.  If the county is looking to regulate hosted transient accommodation rentals it makes sense to talk to the people who earn their mortgage each month by running them.

    Folks who want to see how this regulation was presented can find the information here:

    The regulations themselves can be found here.

  • June 05, 2022 9:45 AM | Robin Ledson

    Aloha Members (and hopefully soon to be members!)  It is renewal time again, and although the 'team' hasn't been very active with emails or news and announcements, it certainly doesn't change the fact that we have our entity 'intact' and ready to defend or speak up for STVR rights here on the island!  We, as most everyone in this business, have had some very busy years (can you believe it is June 2022 already!??) and so have not been super active with communications from BIVRA.  We most certainly still exist, and again, would be ready in an event that required our representation.  To have that 'luxury' on hand, it does take membership and funding and we are hoping that everyone is still willing to invest a very small amount annually to have immediate representation if needed going forward.

    Mahalo for all of your support in the past, and in the future!

    BIVRA BOD and Association

  • December 11, 2021 1:35 PM | Robin Ledson

    Transient Accommodations Tax (TAT)

    ANNOUNCEMENT NO. 2021-01
    December 9, 2021

    Hawai'i County Transient Accommodations Tax (HCTAT)
    Effective January 1, 2022

    The purpose of this Announcement is to notify the public of the HCTAT
     and to provide information for taxpayers subject to the HCTAT.

    Act 1, 1st Special Session 2021 (House Bill 862, H.D. 2, S.D. 2, C.D. 1), which became law on July 8, 2021, authorizes the counties to establish and administer their own transient accommodations tax (TAT) at a maximum rate of 3 percent.
      In order to establish the TAT, the County must first adopt a local ordinance.  The Director of Finance in each County that establishes a County TAT is granted the same authority that the State Director of Taxation has under chapter 237D, Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS).

    The Hawai'i County Council introduced a bill to amend Chapter 2, Hawai'i County Code (HCC), which implements the HCTAT.  The first Finance Committee meeting to discuss Bill 81 (HCTAT) was held on October 19, 2021, and postponed to a subsequent meeting.  On November 3, 2021, the Finance Committee amended Bill 81 to Draft 2 and recommended its passage on first reading by the Hawai'i County Council.  Bill 81, Draft 2 passed first reading on November 18, 2021.  On December 8, 2021, Bill 81, Draft 2, passed second and final reading, without further amendments.  On December 10, 2021, Ordinance No. 21-89, Bill No. 81 (2021), Draft 2, was signed into law by Mayor Mitchell D. Roth.

    Imposition of HCTAT
    Beginning January 1, 2022, the HCTAT is levied at a rate of 3 percent on every taxpayer that has taxable gross rental proceeds and/or total fair market rental value  attributable to the County of Hawai'i. The HCTAT is imposed in addition to the State TAT, which is currently levied at a rate of 10.25 percent. These amounts can be found on Forms TA-1 and TA-2 which must be filed with the State of Hawaii Department of Taxation (DOTAX).  CLICK HERE for a sample Form TA-1, the periodic return for taxable gross rental proceeds and total fair market rental value of timeshares. 

    Chapter 2.x-x, HCC, provides that all operators, timeshare plan managers, transient accommodations brokers, travel agents, and tour packages subject to the HCTAT must have a State TAT license issued pursuant to sections 237D-4 or 237D-4.5, HRS.  Taxpayers who are registered with the State and have a valid State TAT number, will be deemed registered for HCTAT.  Taxpayers subject to the HCTAT do not need to register separately with the County of Hawai'i.

    Tax Returns
    Under Section 2-x.x and 2-x.x, HCC, the County Director of Finance has the authority to prescribe how periodic and annual County TAT returns are filed. The County Director of Finance has determined that State TAT returns filed with DOTAX will also be deemed to have been filed with the County of Hawai'i. Therefore, taxpayers who are subject to the HCTAT will only need to file Forms TA-1 and TA-2 with DOTAX, as they are currently required.   Taxpayers subject to the HCTAT will not need to file separate HCTAT return with the County of Hawai'i.

    Payment Due Dates
    HCTAT payments are due concurrent with the State TAT returns and payments.  Thus, payments are due on or before the 20th day of the calendar month following the close of the filing period. For periodic returns, taxpayers are required to file Form TA-1 on a monthly, quarterly, or semi-annual basis.

    • For monthly filers, the first HCTAT payment is due on or before February 22, 2022.
    • For quarterly filers, the first HCTAT payment is due on or before April 20, 2022.
    • For semi-annual filers, the first HCTAT payment is due on or before July 20, 2022. 

    The annual reconciliation of the State TAT return (Form TA-2) is due on or before the 20th day of the fourth calendar month following the close of the taxable year.  As a general rule, a HCTAT payment will only be due if taxable gross rental proceeds or fair market rental value attributable to County of Hawai'i is reported on Form TA-2 and not reported on Form TA-1 during the taxable year.  If an HCTAT payment is due, filing of Form TA-2 and payment must be made by the deadline.  For calendar year taxpayers, the deadline is April 20, 2023.

    How to Calculate and Make HCTAT Payments
    To calculate the HCTAT payment, multiply the sum of the taxable gross rental proceeds and fair market rental value less any applicable exemptions attributable to County of Hawai'i by 3 percent. For a monthly filer, the first HCTAT payment, as reported on the taxpayer's Form TA-1 for January is due on or before February 22, 2022.

    Payment Methods The County of Hawai'i will accept HCTAT payments in the following methods:

    By Mail:

    Mail payment with the payment voucher form to:
    County of Hawai'i 
    Hawai'i County TAT Office
    25 Aupuni Street, Suite 1101
    Hilo, HI 96720

    Note:  Please do not send cash. All checks should be made payable to the “Director of Finance” in U.S. dollars drawn on any U.S. bank. Attach your check to the payment voucher.  The following information should be written on your check so payment will be properly credited if the check is separated from the payment voucher form:

    • HCTAT
    • The filing period
    • Your State TAT ID number
    • Your daytime phone number
    • Click Here to download a payment voucher form (Form HCTAT-1)


    Automated Clearing House (ACH) payments are accepted via the County’s online payment portal at  No fees will be assessed for ACH payments. However, ACH payments require bank verification, which can take up to 4 days.  If your payment needs to completed sooner, please remit your payment using other payment method.

    Taxpayers whose liability for the TAT exceeds $100,000 per year are required to pay tax by EFT.  ACH payment that will be made via the County’s online payment portal will satisfy this requirement.

    Bulk Filers:

    HCTAT payments for multiple State TAT ID numbers may be remitted via County’s online payment portal rather than having to submit ACH payments online for each individual State TAT ID number.  A one-time Bulk Filers Program Registration Form must be completed and submitted to HCTAT Office.  Participants must be registered to access the online payment portal. Additionally, detailed payment information, in an Excel file format (HCTAT’s Bulk Filers Simple File) must be submitted via email at as soon as a payment has been made online. To register to this program and for eligibility requirements, please refer to the HCTAT Bulk Filers Instructions Manual. 

    IMPORTANT: Commercial Bank Account Holders with an account covered by ACH Debit Block Service must provide their financial institution with the County’s ACH Debit ID No. 00000000000.

    For more information contact the HCTAT Office.  DOTAX will not be able to answer any questions regarding the HCTAT.


    1 Hawai'i County Code §2.
    2 State of Hawaii, Department of Taxation - Form TA-1/TA-2, Line 3, Column C.
    3 State of Hawaii, Department of Taxation - Form TA-1/TA-2, Line 7.
    4 Hawaii Revised Statutes (HRS) §237D-2.
    5 HRS §§ 237D-6, 7.
    6 Hawai'i County Transient Accommodations Tax is levied beginning on January 1, 2022.
    7 Payment voucher form will be posted in the County’s website and mailed out to taxpayers who filed previously with DOTAX when it becomes available.




    Hawai'i County TAT Office


    Mailing Address:

    Hawai'i County TAT Office
    25 Aupuni Street, Suite 1101
    Hilo, HI 96720

    Phone: (808) 961-8793   


    • What is the County Transient Accommodations Tax?

    • Who has to pay the HCTAT?

    • When is this effective?

    • When are payments due?

    • Can I just make one payment for both the State and County portions?

    • Do I have to file a separate return with the County of Hawai'i?

    • If I don't have to file a separate return, how will you know how to apply my payment

    • What happens if I don't pay?

    • Can I pass the County Transient Accommodations Tax on to the visitor?

    • How do I pay my County Transient Accommodations Tax?

    • What about bookings made in advance before the effective date?

    More FAQs

    HCTAT Bulk Filers Program

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