S.B. NO.














RELATING to taxation.





SECTION 1. The Hawaii Revised Statutes is amended by adding a new chapter to be appropriately designated and to read as follows:



   -A Definitions. For the purposes of this chapter:

"Department" means the department of taxation.

"Director" means the director of taxation.

"Person" has the same meaning as defined in section 237-1.

"Residential real property" means fee simple or leasehold real property on which currently is situated:

(1) From one to four dwelling units; or

(2) A residential condominium or cooperative apartment, the primary use of which is occupancy as a residence.

   ‑B Empty homes tax. There is levied and shall be assessed and collected each month an empty homes tax from certain residential property owners in the State who own a vacant residential unit. The tax, in the aggregate, shall be equal to five per cent of the gross value of the unit per year.

   -C Return and payments. On or before the twentieth day of each calendar month, every person taxable under this chapter during the preceding calendar month shall file a sworn return with the director in such form as the director shall prescribe together with a remittance for the amount of the tax required by section    ‑B. Sections 237-30 and 237-32 shall apply to returns and penalties made under this chapter to the same extent as if the sections were set forth specifically in this section.

   -D Remittances. All remittances of the empty homes tax imposed under this chapter shall be made by cash, bank draft, cashier's check, money order, or certificate of deposit to the office of the taxation district to which the return was transmitted. The department shall deposit the moneys into the dwelling unit revolving fund established pursuant to section 201H-191.

   -E Filing of returns. All monthly, quarterly, semiannual, and annual returns shall be transmitted to the office of the taxation district in which the residential real property is located or to the office of the first taxation district in Honolulu.

   -F Appeals. Any person aggrieved by any assessment of the empty homes tax for any month or any year may appeal from the assessment in the manner and within the time and in all other respects as provided in the case of income tax appeals by section 235-114.

   -G Records to be kept; examination. Every person shall keep in the English language within the State, and preserve for a period of three years, suitable records relating to the empty homes tax levied and assessed under this chapter, and such other books, records of account, and invoices as may be required by the department, and all such books, records, and invoices shall be open for examination at any time by the department or the Multistate Tax Commission pursuant to chapter 255, or the authorized representative thereof.

   -H Administration and enforcement; rules. (a) The director shall administer and enforce this chapter in respect of:

(1) The examination of books and records of taxpayers and other persons;

(2) Procedure and powers upon failure or refusal by a person to make a return or proper return; and

(3) The general administration of this chapter.

(b) All of the provisions of chapter 237 not inconsistent with this chapter and which may appropriately be applied to the taxes, persons, circumstances, and situations involved in this chapter, including (without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing) provisions as to penalties and interest, and provisions granting administrative powers to the department, and provisions for the assessment, levy, and collection of taxes, shall be applicable to the taxes imposed by this chapter, and to the assessment, levy, and collection thereof.

(c) The director may adopt, amend, or repeal rules under chapter 91 to carry out this chapter."

SECTION 2. In codifying the new sections added by section 1 of this Act, the revisor of statutes shall substitute appropriate section numbers for the letters used in designating the new sections in this Act.

SECTION 3. This Act shall take effect on July 1, 2020.




















Report Title:

Empty Homes Tax; Dwelling Unit Revolving Fund; Fair Market Rent



Establishes an empty homes tax against certain residential property owners who own a vacant residential unit in the State.




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