(4) comments Back to story

Bailey Jones

It seems like the city should be able to ask Homeaway, Airbnb, and other sites, for a list of homes and owners listing on those sites. That would be a good first step in determining how many STRs are avoiding their legal obligations. Once that is known it will be clearer whether an agreement to collect taxes is warranted.

Bill Cochrane

I think that if the City asked those companies for a "list" the companies would tell them to Google it. Easy Peasy. https://www.homeaway.com/d/14/galveston?k_clickid=CjwKCAiAgqDxBRBTEiwA59eENy7aWwKboBmxp7KVrrCctGZ_RNvIu1L7tgx1bLVvbmT2WQyLAsohTRoCV0QQAvD_BwE&ds_cid=71700000029415580&ds_kids=p29721884304&ds_kid=43700029721884304&ksprof_id=700000001588387&ksdevice=c&ktarget=kwd-330520320205&kloct=&klocf=9027827&ds_aid=58700003775152654&ha_t=1t1:g:&gclid=CjwKCAiAgqDxBRBTEiwA59eENy7aWwKboBmxp7KVrrCctGZ_RNvIu1L7tgx1bLVvbmT2WQyLAsohTRoCV0QQAvD_BwE&gclsrc=aw.ds

Mary Branum

Third party OTA's (online travel agents) will not divulge addresses or owner/operator names.

Lisa Arthur

Because HomeAway and Galveston have been unable to strike a deal, the booking process currently is overly burdensome both on tourists and on rental owners. In many instances, the tourist thinks they paid thru VRBO, only to read the fine print and find that they still have to pay the 9% hotel tax. And the rental owner, who used to be able to collect all taxes thru VRBO, now has the state tax collected thru VRBO, and has to send the tourist an invoice outside of VRBO for the 9%. It's a bad deal for the tourist and a bad deal for the rental owner. I wish the two the two entities would settle their differences and come up with some kind of compromise.

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