The Georgia Supreme Court favored Columbus in a 4-3 decision today in the city’s lawsuit against the online travel company Expedia Inc.
At issue is the difference between the wholesale rate the online company pays for the rooms and the rate the public pays, In 2008, a Muscogee County Superior Court judge ordered Expedia to start paying occupancy taxes on the room rate instead of the wholesale rate it gets from the hotel. Expedia appealed, arguing an added fee wasn’t subject to the tax.
“Since Expedia has chosen to represent the room rate to the public as the price a customer must pay to secure his right to occupy the room, the city has no choice ... but to tax the customer for the published room rate demanded by Expedia,” the majority opinion states.
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