Municipal Accommodation Tax (MAT) – A Visitor Tax
In 2018 the Provincial government passed a regulation allowing for a MAT. Many municipalities across Ontario have passed by-laws to implement this tax for transient accommodation, which is paid by the visitor. Each municipality determines which transient accommodation is included – hotels, inns, motels, resorts, B&Bs, trailer parks, campgrounds, and/or short term rentals (such as Airbnb). Here is the Provincial Legislation regarding the tax.
The revenue generated is shared by the municipality and a local non-for-profit- tourism organization. At least 50% of the revenue is to be used by the local tourism organization for tourism/destination marketing promotion and product development. The remaining revenue will be used by the municipality. The legislation does not define how the municipality’s portion is to be spent, but some examples from municipalities who have collected this visitor tax include improving tourism infrastructure and bid submission support for hosting sports tourism and large events.
The City of Peterborough implemented the visitor tax in the fall of 2019. At this time none of the municipalities in the County of Peterborough have introduced MAT and there is no deadline by which this would need to be implemented.
Some Peterborough County accommodation providers attended MAT information sessions hosted by Peterborough & the Kawarthas Tourism and Peterborough County. If you didn’t attend, the presentation can be viewed here.
Chamber members are encouraged to become informed about the MAT and consider the positive and negative impacts this may have on your business procedures and area tourism and destination marketing. The Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (TIAO) has provided this factsheet for municipalities and a Q&A that is being updated regularly.
Please watch our weekly Chamber NewsFlash for additional information as it becomes available.