Senate Bill No. 395
Introduced By _______________________________________________________________________________
A Bill for an Act entitled: "An Act relating to the equalized tax treatment between in-state and out-of-state owners of rental vehicles; imposing a 6 percent surcharge on rental vehicles; providing that the surcharge is a reimbursement for taxes and fees paid on rental vehicles; providing that the amount by which the surcharge exceeds taxes and fees paid be remitted to the department of transportation; providing for the distribution of the excess surcharge; establishing a Montana heritage preservation and development account for the deposit of a portion of the excess surcharge; requiring the preservation of records relating to the surcharge; amending section 61-3-728, MCA; and providing a delayed effective date."
Be it enacted by the Legislature of the State of Montana:
NEW SECTION. Section 1. Definitions. As used in [section 2], the following definitions apply:
(1) "Department" means the department of transportation provided for in 2-15-2501.
(2) "Rental vehicle" means a passenger vehicle that:
(a) is rented for a period of not more than 30 days;
(b) is rented without a driver;
(c) is designed to transport 15 or fewer passengers; and
(d) has a manufacturer's rated capacity of 1 ton or less.
NEW SECTION. Section 2. Rental vehicle surcharge -- reimbursement. (1) There is imposed a surcharge on a rental vehicle as defined in [section 1]. The surcharge is 6% on the rental base price, exclusive of gas and insurance, as stated in the rental contract. The surcharge must be stated in the rental contract and collected in accordance with the terms of the contract. The surcharge is a reimbursement for taxes and fees paid at the time of registration.
(2) (a) On or before February 15 of each year, the owner of the rental vehicles on which the surcharge was collected shall file a report with the department stating the:
(i) gross receipts, exclusive of gas and insurance, of the rental contracts;
(ii) total amount of vehicle taxes and fees paid the previous calendar year;
(iii) total amount of the surcharge collected in the previous calendar year; and
(iv) amount, if any, by which the surcharge exceeded the taxes and fees.
(b) The owner shall remit the excess surcharge with the annual report to the department. The annual report must be on a form provided by the department. The department shall remit the excess surcharge to the state treasurer for deposit as follows:
(i) 70% to the Montana heritage preservation and development account as provided in [section 4];
(ii) 20% to the state highway account of the state special revenue fund;
(iii) 7.5% to be distributed equally to the general fund of all counties;
(iv) 2.5% to the state general fund.
(3) The auditing requirements of 61-3-728 apply to this section.
Section 3. Section 61-3-728, MCA, is amended to read:
"61-3-728. Preservation of proportional registration records and surcharge payment records. (1) An owner whose application for proportional registration has been accepted shall preserve the records on which the application is based for a period of 4 years following the year or period upon which the application is based. Upon request of the department, the owner shall make these records available to the department for audit as to accuracy of the computations and payments or pay the reasonable costs of an audit at the owner's home office by an appointed representative of the department.
(2) The owner of a rental vehicle on which the surcharge provided for in [section 2] was collected shall preserve the records pertaining to the collection and payment of the surcharge for a period of 4 years following the year or period upon which the surcharge is based. Upon request of the department, the owner shall make these records available to the department for audit as to the accuracy of the computations and the collections.
(3) The department may make arrangements with agencies of other jurisdictions administering motor vehicle registration laws for joint audits of the owner."
NEW SECTION. Section 4. Montana heritage preservation and development account. (1) There is established a Montana heritage preservation and development account in the state special revenue fund.
(2) Money deposited in the account from the surcharge as provided by [section 2(2)(b)(i)] must be used to service revenue bonds issued for:
(a) the purchase of properties in Virginia City and Nevada City; and
(b) restoration, maintenance, and operation of historic properties in Virginia City and Nevada City.
NEW SECTION. Section 5. Codification instruction. (1) [Sections 1 and 2] are intended to be codified as an integral part of Title 61, chapter 3, part 7, and the provisions of Title 61, chapter 3, part 7, apply to [sections 1 and 2].
(2) [Section 4] is intended to be codified as an integral part of Title 22, chapter 3, part 1, and the provisions of Title 22, chapter 3, part 1, apply to [section 4].
NEW SECTION. Section 6. Effective date. [This act] is effective January 1, 1998.