The Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax Ordinance

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Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax

The Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax is operative as of January 1, 2019.

This tax generally applies if you have more than $50,000,000 in total combined taxable gross receipts, or if you are subject to the administrative office tax.

In addition to the existing Gross Receipts and Payroll Expense Taxes, this measure imposes an additional gross receipts tax of 0.175% to 0.69% on combined taxable gross receipts over $50 million. Businesses or combined groups that pay the administrative office tax will pay an additional tax of 1.5% on their payroll expense in San Francisco.

These additional taxes would not apply to:

  • Certain nonprofit organizations and businesses exempt from local taxation, such as banks and insurance companies;
  • Receipts that are exempt from the gross receipts tax; and
  • Receipts subject to the City’s Early Care and Education Commercial Rents Tax.

Persons projected to be subject to the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax (based their 2018 gross receipts tax returns) will see an estimated payment amount for tax year 2019 on their quarterly bills. There will be no penalties for underpayment or late payment of the estimated taxes for the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax during tax year 2019.

There is litigation pending about the validity of Proposition C. Until the legislation is resolved, the revenues from the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax cannot be expended by the City. In order to fund homeless services as outlined in Proposition C as quickly as possible, the City passed an ordinance effective May 2019, creating an opportunity for taxpayers to either waive their right to refund of the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax based on the grounds of the pending litigation, or make an irrevocable gift to be used for the same purposes as the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax. 

Waive Right to Refund

If a taxpayer chooses to waive its right to a refund, the City will grant such taxpayer a credit of 10% of the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax refund waived. 

  • Funds will be spent for the purposes allowed under the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax Ordinance passed by the voters as Proposition C in November 2018.
  • A binding agreement with the City must be signed by the filer and each member of filer’s combined group (if applicable) engaging in business within the City.
  • The Taxpayer or combined group irrevocably waives and releases its right to a refund of the Homelessness Gross Receipts Taxes.
  • The taxpayer or combined group must enter into a new binding agreement each year prior to (or at the time of) filing its annual tax return.

Notice: Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax Waiver of Right to Refund 

Agreement: Waiver of Right To Refund Of Homelessness Gross Receipts Taxes

Make Irrevocable Gift

If a taxpayer is willing to make an irrevocable gift to the City for the City to use for the same purposes as the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax, the City will grant such taxpayer a credit against the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax liability of the taxpayer or its combined group equal to 110% of their gift amount. 

  • Funds will be spent for the purposes allowed under the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax Ordinance passed by the voters as Proposition C in November 2018.
  • Any and all gifts are irrevocable.
  • Any person that makes an irrevocable gift shall be allowed a non-refundable credit against the Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax liability of that person or the combined group of which it is a part.
  • The tax credit shall equal 110% of the amount of the gift.
  • The tax credit will apply to the prior tax year if made after January 1st, but before a taxpayer timely files its Annual Business Tax return for that tax year.  Otherwise, the tax credit shall apply to the tax year in which the gift is made.
  • Any unused portion of this credit may be carried forward to future tax years up to and including tax year 2025, to be used against the future Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax liability of the person making the gift or the combined group of which it is a part.

Form: Homelessness Gross Receipts Tax Irrevocable Gift

Additional Information:

Note: The City and County of San Francisco, the SF311 Customer Service Center and The Office of the Treasurer & Tax Collector can only provide general information and cannot advise customers on detailed tax matters regarding their business. This includes ordinance interpretations and tax calculation of payment or fees. Consult your own tax professional, tax attorney, or Certified Public Accountant for specific questions regarding your business.

Need Further Assistance?
Submit a service request.  A Representative will contact you on the SAME DAY of the request if submitted prior to 7:00 pm. Requests received after 7:00 pm will receive a response by the next business day.