Portland Metro Implements New Income Tax for Metro Supportive Housing Services
April 5, 2021
In May 2020, voters in the Portland metropolitan area approved a ballot measure creating an income tax to fund housing services for individuals experiencing homelessness. Effective January 1, 2021, the Metro Supportive Housing Services (SHS) Income Tax establishes the following items:
- a 1% personal income tax on taxable income above $125,000 for individuals and $200,000 for couples filing jointly, and
- a 1% business income tax on net income for businesses with gross receipts above $5 million for all receipts, whether within or outside Metro jurisdiction.
The Supportive Housing Services (SHS) Income taxes are like the Multnomah County Business Income tax and are being administered by the City of Portland Revenue Division. All Returns and payments should be remitted through the Portland Revenue Online (PRO) system. This is the same system business taxpayers currently use to pay City of Portland/Multnomah County Business Taxes, so a separate log-in is not required for businesses already registered.
Metro’s jurisdiction includes the 24 cities and unincorporated portions of Multnomah, Clackamas, and Washington counties that lie within the Portland metropolitan area. Individuals and businesses can verify if they are located within the Metro area by verifying a residence or workplace address through the Find your councilor tool. If the results provide you with a Metro Councilor, then the address is within Metro’s jurisdiction and may be subject to the SHS personal or business income tax.
Supportive Housing Services (SHS) Personal Income Tax
For Metro District residents, the personal income tax will be based on 100% of their Oregon taxable income, while the taxable income of non-residents will be based only on income earned within the boundaries of the Metro District. Employers located outside of the Metro District are not required to withhold if they employ Metro District residents, but they may choose to withhold voluntarily.
For Calendar Year 2021, the Metro District understands businesses may not have a system in place for this withholding. The District will not assess late-payment penalties for 2021 if this withholding isn’t available.
Next steps for employers:
- Create a Portland Revenue Online (PRO) account (if not currently registered with the City of Portland).
- Review the payroll system to verify when SHS withholding will be available in either 2021 or no later than Jan 1, 2022.
- Communicate in writing to employees once voluntary SHS withholding is available and provide the Metro Tax OPT Form or Metro/MultCo OPT Form.
- If an employee elects to have tax voluntarily withheld in 2021, the employee must complete and return the OPT form to the employer.
- Review payroll system to verify all local wages and tax withheld are separately recorded as these amounts must be reported by jurisdiction on the W-2.
Beginning in 2022, mandatory withholding will be required of employers with a Metro District business location for employees who earn $200,000 or more during the calendar year; this applies to both resident and non-resident employees. Employees who earn under $200,000 can choose to opt-in with a designated amount, while employees subject to mandatory withholding may choose to opt-out based on their tax situation by completing the OPT form.
Employers will be required to quarterly returns, annual reconciliations, and W-2 submission through the Portland Revenue Online (PRO) system using bulk filing or electronic data entry. Metro SHS withholding payment due dates are the same as the employers Federal and Oregon dates (for more information see the Metro SHS Employer Withholding Requirement). Payments by ACH Credit are encouraged and available for bulk filers. ACH debit is available for employers with only one return and payment. Payments by check are only available upon request or petition.
Supportive Housing Services (SHS) Business Income Tax
The Metro SHS business income tax applies to partnerships, C corporations, S corporations, limited liability companies and estates/trusts. Sole proprietorships are not subject to the business income tax as these are reported on the individuals’ personal income tax return.
This tax is based on net income from businesses within Metro’s jurisdiction who have over $5 million in gross receipts from both within and without the Metro’s jurisdiction and is administered by the City of Portland Revenue Division. Income from business activity both within and without the Metro jurisdiction must be apportioned to determine the amount earned within the Metro jurisdiction. Metro has aligned with the methods of apportionment used by Multnomah County and the City of Portland. Businesses should review their internal systems to verify they can correctly calculate sales that should be sourced to the Metro region. Additional business income tax FAQs can be found here.
SHS business income tax is in effect for tax years on and after January 1, 2021. Annual returns will be due April 15, 2022 and must be remitted through the Portland Revenue Online (PRO) system. Metro is currently developing estimate forms. Geffen Mesher will release additional information as it becomes available.
If you have questions related to these new taxes, such as how to implement the withholding process, how to source wages to the Metro District, or how to determine your Metro tax liability, our state and local tax (SALT) professionals are available to assist. Please contact our SALT Team at SALT@GMCO.com.