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Kentucky City Has Home Rule Powers


 Home rule power in Kentucky.

The Home rule entitles local jurisdictions to have greater autonomy over many matters, including local taxation.

State Senator Chris Girdler asked the attorney general to determine whether not a city has the right to withdraw from an existing joint city-county tourism commission and then assess a separate tax to generate revenue for the city’s tourism board.

The Kentucky Attorney General has determined it does. The state’s home rule provision entitles the city to “withdraw from a joint tourism commission” because the law does “not expressly prohibit this action.”

Additional taxation

The AG opinion acknowledges “the possibility of multiple tourism boards does create the possibility of additional taxation on the transient citizens of the state.” It continues:

“We cannot say that any adverse effect on the transient citizens of the state would outweigh the possible benefit to the municipality of additional revenue for tourism promotion. Further, the legislature seems to have expressly allowed for multiple tourism commissions, and thus multiple taxation, by allowing local governments to act separately in forming tourism commissions….”

Any separate transient room tax, if imposed, cannot exceed 3%. For additional information, please read OAG15007.

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Gail Cole
Avalara Author
Gail Cole
Gail Cole
Avalara Author Gail Cole
Gail began researching and writing about sales tax in 2012 and has been fascinated with it ever since. She has a penchant for uncovering unusual tax facts, and endeavors to make complex sales tax laws more digestible for both experts and laypeople.