TOURIST DEVELOPMENT TAX
What is the Tourist Development Tax?
The Tourist Development Tax is a local sales tax on transient rentals which is authorized and governed by Florida Statute 125.0104. As it applies exclusively to rental of living quarters or accommodations for a term of six months or less, it has been nicknamed the “bed tax.”
In Walton County, the Tourist Development Tax rate is 4.5% and applies to rentals of properties located south of the Intracoastal Waterway. This area includes Hwy. 30-A, Hwy. 98, Emerald Coast Parkway, Scenic Gulf Drive, and all of Walton County’s beaches south of Choctawhatchee Bay.
How is it used?
After administrative costs, the revenue from the 4.5% Tourist Development Tax is used as follows: 2% for marketing/promotion and beach maintenance, 1% for shoulder season promotion and new product development, 1% for beach nourishment and restoration, and 0.5% for the promotion of emerging markets. The Tourist Development Council oversees the expenditures of the tax and reports to the Walton County Board of County Commissioners.
Who is responsible for remittance?
Managers of rental properties and owners who manage their own rentals are responsible for collecting, accounting for, and remitting Tourist Development Tax from their guests to the Walton County Clerk of Court. Remittance is normally due monthly, but seasonal rentals and individual rental owners may qualify to file quarterly.
How is it filed?
Both online and manual methods of remittance are available. Online registration and filing are offered at www.touristtax.com/Walton. There are two major advantages of online payment. First, the tax due is calculated automatically. Also, timely online filers receive a collection allowance discount of 2.5% of the tax due up to a maximum of $30.00. If you prefer to register or file manually, click here for a registration form and click here for a Tourist Development Tax return form. Once filled out, the forms can be mailed to the following address:
Walton County Clerk of Court
Attention: Tourist Development Tax
31 Coastal Centre Blvd, Suite 500
Santa Rosa Beach, FL 32459