(1) As used in this section and ss. 166.231, 166.232, and 166.234:
(a) “Department” means the Department of Revenue or its designated agent.
Terms Used In Florida Statutes 166.233
- Contract: A legal written agreement that becomes binding when signed.
- Discovery: Lawyers' examination, before trial, of facts and documents in possession of the opponents to help the lawyers prepare for trial.
- Obligation: An order placed, contract awarded, service received, or similar transaction during a given period that will require payments during the same or a future period.
- person: includes individuals, children, firms, associations, joint adventures, partnerships, estates, trusts, business trusts, syndicates, fiduciaries, corporations, and all other groups or combinations. See Florida Statutes 1.01
- writing: includes handwriting, printing, typewriting, and all other methods and means of forming letters and characters upon paper, stone, wood, or other materials. See Florida Statutes 1.01
(b) “Effective date,” with respect to any levy, repeal of a levy, or update to a list required under this section, means the effective date of the related obligation or change in the obligation of sellers to collect the tax; however, with respect to taxable service that is regularly billed on a monthly cycle basis, each levy, repeal, or update applies to any bill dated on or after the effective date of such event.
(c) “Levy” means and includes the imposition of a tax under s. 166.231 or s. 166.232 and all changes in the rate of a tax imposed under either of those sections.
(d) “Seller” means a person who sells a service that is subject to a levy.
(2)(a) A tax levy must be adopted by ordinance, and the effective date of every levy or repeal thereof must be a subsequent January 1, April 1, July 1, or October 1. A municipality shall notify the department of the adoption or repeal of a levy at least 120 days before the effective date thereof. Such notification must be furnished on a form prescribed by the department and must specify the services taxed under the authority of s. 166.231 or s. 166.232; the rate of tax applied to each service; the effective date of the levy or repeal thereof; and the name, mailing address, and telephone number of a person designated by the municipality to respond to inquiries concerning the tax. The department shall maintain this information for the purpose of responding to inquiries with respect thereto, and any person may, in writing, request such information from the department. For purposes of this section, a response to such a person is timely if in writing and dated no later than 20 days after the receipt of the request. The department shall charge such persons a fee to recover the actual cost of maintaining and furnishing such information. The department has no liability for any loss of or decrease in revenue by reason of any error, omission, or untimely action that results in the nonpayment of the tax imposed under s. 166.231 or s. 166.232. The provisions of this paragraph which prescribe effective dates and require municipalities to furnish notifications to the department do not apply to taxes levied on service provided by the municipality levying the tax or by a separate utility authority, board, or commission of the municipality.
(b) The department may contract with a private entity to maintain and furnish the information described in paragraph (a); however, the department shall establish the fee charged to persons requesting that information.
(3) A municipality shall provide to any person, within 20 days following receipt of the person’s written request, a copy of the ordinance adopting any levy and all amendments thereto, and shall advise such person in writing of the types of media on which the lists described in this subsection are available, the charges, if any, for supplying the lists on each available medium, and the address to which a request for such lists should be transmitted. Within 20 days following receipt of a written request therefor accompanied by payment of the cost, the municipality shall transmit the following to the person requesting them:
(a) A list containing each street name, known street name aliases, street address number ranges, applicable directionals, and zip codes associated with each street name, for all street addresses located within the municipality. For a range of street address numbers located within a municipality which consists only of odd or even street numbers, the list must specify whether the street numbers in the range are odd or even. The list shall be alphabetical, except that numbered streets shall be in numerical sequence;
(b) A list containing each postal zip code and all the city names associated therewith for all zip codes assigned to geographic areas located entirely within the municipality, including zip codes assigned to post office boxes; and
(c) A sequential list containing all post office box number ranges and the city names and zip codes associated therewith, for all post office boxes located within the municipality, except that post office boxes with postal zip codes entirely within the municipality which are included on the list furnished under paragraph (b) need not be duplicated.
The lists shall be printed, except that, if a list is available on another medium, the municipality shall, upon request, furnish the list on such medium in addition to or in lieu of the printed lists. The municipality shall be responsible for updating the lists as changes occur and for furnishing this information to all sellers affected by the changes. Each update shall specify an effective date which shall be either the next ensuing January 1, April 1, July 1, or October 1; shall be furnished to sellers not less than 60 days prior to the effective date; and shall identify the additions, deletions, and other changes to the preceding version of the list. The seller shall be responsible for charging the tax only to service and billing addresses contained in the lists which include all the required elements required by this subsection, including lists furnished to it by a municipality without the seller’s request. The municipality shall be entitled to collect a fee not to exceed the actual cost of duplicating the information furnished to the person requesting it.
(4) The obligation of a seller to collect and remit the tax for any municipality is conditioned upon the timely availability to the seller of accurate information as described in subsections (2) and (3) in the manner prescribed in those subsections. For purposes of determining the timeliness of such information, the date of a request, response, update, or other transmittal is the date received. If any such information is not timely furnished to a seller, any related obligation to collect and remit tax is suspended during the period of delay, except that:
(a) If a request for information described in subsection (2) or subsection (3) precedes the date on which a municipality is required to furnish notification to the department as prescribed in subsection (2), the lack of a timely response to the request does not affect the seller’s obligation to collect and remit tax for that municipality.
(b) If a seller is properly collecting and remitting tax on a taxable service from customers within a municipality as of the date of any request for information under subsection (2) or subsection (3), the lack of a timely response to the request does not affect the seller’s obligation to continue collecting and remitting the tax levied on the same service from the same customers.
(c) If a failure to furnish timely information under subsection (2) or subsection (3) causes a delay in a seller’s receipt of a list or update required by subsection (3) to a date less than 60 days before the effective date of a levy or update, the obligation to collect and remit tax pursuant thereto may not commence until the next subsequent January 1, April 1, July 1, or October 1.
(5) If it is determined from lists or updates furnished under subsection (3) that more than one municipality claims the same address or group of addresses, the seller shall notify the municipalities affected within 60 days. Upon resolution of the competing claims, the affected municipalities shall furnish the seller with a signed agreement describing the resolution. The seller shall begin collecting and remitting tax pursuant to the agreement as of the next ensuing January 1, April 1, July 1, or October 1 that is at least 60 days after its receipt of the signed agreement. Prior to such date, the seller shall continue its prior tax treatment of charges to customers with addresses subject to competing claims. For purposes of this subsection, “prior tax treatment” means the practice of collecting and remitting or not collecting and remitting tax during periods prior to discovery of the competing claims. The seller has no liability to any affected municipality for amounts not collected and remitted before the agreement was implemented, except to the extent that the seller’s prior tax treatment was confirmed as correct in the agreement.
(6) If a list or update furnished pursuant to subsection (3) contains all the elements required by that subsection, but such information does not conform with address information in the seller’s records, the seller may so notify the municipality that furnished the list or update. The notification shall identify the portion of the list or update that is in question and describe the nature of the problem. If the seller furnishes such a notification within 60 days after first receiving the list or update from the municipality, the seller shall not be obligated to collect and remit the tax with respect to the portion of the list or update at issue until the next ensuing January 1, April 1, July 1, or October 1 which is at least 60 days after the municipality furnishes the seller with information which resolves the issue raised by the seller.