Philly wants Airbnb rentals taxed like hotels; Plan pushed ahead of papal visit

Philadelphia wants to cash in on Airbnb.

Mayor Michael Nutter is proposing to have the city’s 8 1/2-per cent hotel tax applied to short-term home and room rentals, too.

City Councilman William Greenlee said Thursday Airbnb-type rentals are essentially short-term hotels and should be made to follow the same rules.

His legislation would adjust zoning rules that have made most rentals illegal in residential areas. It would require a city-issued license for rentals more than 31 days.

Currently the rentals are not taxed in Philadelphia.

The city expects thousands of rentals through Airbnb and similar online marketplaces for Pope Francis’ visit in September and the Democratic National Convention next year.

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