CHAPTER 225

ADMISSIONS AND DUES TAXES

Table of Contents

Sec. 12-541. Admissions tax. Exemptions. Nature of tax.

Sec. 12-554. Appeal.


Sec. 12-541. Admissions tax. Exemptions. Nature of tax. (a) Except as provided in subsection (b) of this section, there is hereby imposed a tax of ten per cent of the admission charge to any place of amusement, entertainment or recreation. No tax shall be imposed with respect to any admission charge:

(1) When the admission charge is less than one dollar or, in the case of any motion picture show, when the admission charge is not more than five dollars;

(2) When a daily admission charge is imposed that entitles the patron to participate in an athletic or sporting activity;

(3) To any event, other than events held at the stadium facility, as defined in section 32-651, if all of the proceeds from the event inure exclusively to an entity that is exempt from federal income tax under the Internal Revenue Code, provided such entity actively engages in and assumes the financial risk associated with the presentation of such event;

(4) To any event, other than events held at the stadium facility, as defined in section 32-651, that, in the opinion of the commissioner, is conducted primarily to raise funds for an entity that is exempt from federal income tax under the Internal Revenue Code, provided the commissioner is satisfied that the net profit that inures to such entity from such event will exceed the amount of the admissions tax that, but for this subdivision, would be imposed upon the person making such charge to such event;

(5) Other than for events held at the stadium facility, as defined in section 32-651, paid by centers of service for elderly persons, as described in section 17a-310;

(6) To any production featuring live performances by actors or musicians presented at Gateway's Candlewood Playhouse, Ocean Beach Park or any nonprofit theater or playhouse in the state, provided such theater or playhouse possesses evidence confirming exemption from federal tax under Section 501 of the Internal Revenue Code;

(7) To any carnival or amusement ride;

(8) To any interscholastic athletic event held at the stadium facility, as defined in section 32-651;

(9) If the admission charge would have been subject to tax under the provisions of section 12-542 of the general statutes, revision of 1958, revised to January 1, 1999; or

(10) On and after July 1, 2020, to any event at the Dunkin' Donuts Park in Hartford.

(b) (1) For the following venues and events, for sales occurring on or after July 1, 2019, but prior to July 1, 2020, the tax imposed under this section shall be seven and one-half per cent of the admission charge to:

(A) Any event at the XL Center in Hartford;

(B) Any event at Dillon Stadium in Hartford;

(C) Any athletic event presented by a member team of the Atlantic League of Professional Baseball at the New Britain Stadium;

(D) Any event at the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport;

(E) Any event at the Harbor Yard Amphitheater in Bridgeport;

(F) Any event at Dodd Stadium in Norwich;

(G) Any event at the Oakdale Theatre in Wallingford; and

(H) Any event other than an interscholastic athletic event at the stadium facility, as defined in section 32-651.

(2) For sales occurring on or after July 1, 2019, but prior to July 1, 2020, for any event at the Dunkin' Donuts Park in Hartford, the tax imposed under this section shall be five per cent of the admission charge.

(3) For the venues and events specified in subdivision (1) of this subsection, for sales occurring on or after July 1, 2020, the tax imposed under this section shall be five per cent of the admission charge.

(4) On and after July 1, 2001, the tax imposed under this section on any motion picture show shall be six per cent of the admission charge.

(c) The tax shall be imposed upon the person making such charge and reimbursement for the tax shall be collected by such person from the purchase. Such reimbursement, termed “tax”, shall be paid by the purchaser to the person making the admission charge. Such tax, when added to the admission charge, shall be a debt from the purchaser to the person making the admission charge and shall be recoverable at law. The amount of tax reimbursement, when so collected, shall be deemed to be a special fund in trust for the state of Connecticut.

(1971, P.A. 837, S. 2, 3; June, 1971, P.A. 7, S. 3; P.A. 73-521; P.A. 77-614, S. 139, 610; P.A. 81-404, S. 1, 2; P.A. 82-457, S. 1, 2; P.A. 88-140, S. 1, 2; 88-293, S. 1, 2; P.A. 93-74, S. 36, 67; 93-332, S. 10, 11, 42; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 94-4, S. 22, 85; P.A. 95-160, S. 64, 69; P.A. 97-315, S. 2, 4; Dec. Sp. Sess. P.A. 98-1, S. 33, 43; P.A. 99-121, S. 16, 28; 99-173, S. 52, 65; 99-241, S. 57, 66; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 99-1, S. 27, 51; P.A. 00-140, S. 25, 40; 00-170, S. 16, 42; P.A. 06-186, S. 75; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 07-1, S. 127; P.A. 10-146, S. 1; P.A. 11-6, S. 105; P.A. 14-47, S. 49; 14-217, S. 225; P.A. 15-184, S. 11; 15-244, S. 216; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 16-3, S. 185; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 17-2, S. 319, 627; P.A. 19-117, S. 354.)

History: 1971 act excluded from admission tax events where daily admission charge entitles patron to participate in athletic or sporting activity; P.A. 73-521 added Subsec. (c) re exemption for admissions paid for by groups of at least ten members of senior citizens centers; P.A. 77-614 substituted commissioner of revenue services for tax commissioner, effective January 1, 1979; P.A. 81-404 added provision in Subsec. (b) that the tax shall not be applicable to admission charges for any event at the Hartford Civic Center or the New Haven Coliseum; P.A. 82-457 revised provisions concerning circumstances under which tax is not imposed by deleting Subsecs. (b) and (c) and including a list of six events or situations when tax would not be imposed as follows: (1) If charge is under $1, (2) a daily charge to participate in sporting activity, (3) when all proceeds inure to tax-exempt entity and such entity assumes the financial risk in the event, (4) event conducted primarily to raise funds for a tax-exempt entity, provided profits inuring to entity exceed the tax that would otherwise apply, (5) any event at Hartford Civic Center or the New Haven Coliseum and (6) admission charges paid by centers of service for elderly persons; P.A. 88-140 added Subdiv. (7) concerning exemptions for certain live performances, effective July 1, 1988, and applicable to performances on or after that date; P.A. 88-293 amended Subdiv. (1) to exempt motion picture shows having an admission charge of less than $2, effective July 1, 1988, and applicable to admissions to events occurring on or after that date; P.A. 93-74 added New Britain Beehive Stadium, facilities owned or managed by the Tennis Foundation of Connecticut or any successor organization and the William A. O'Neill Convocation Center to list of exemptions from the tax in Subdiv. (5), effective May 19, 1993, and applicable to sales occurring on and after January 1, 1994; P.A. 93-332 added facilities owned or managed by the Tennis Foundation of Connecticut or any successor organization and New Britain Veterans Memorial Stadium to list of exemptions from the tax in Subdiv. (5), effective June 25, 1993, and applicable July 1, 1993; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 94-4 added new Subdiv. (8) exempting carnival and amusement rides, effective July 1, 1994; P.A. 95-160 revised effective date of May Sp. Sess. P.A. 94-4 but without affecting this section; P.A. 97-315 increased the amount of the admission charge for motion picture shows that may be exempt from $2 to $4.50 and amended Subdiv. (7) to add exemptions for Gateway's Candlewood Playhouse and Ocean Beach Park, effective July 10, 1997, and applicable to sales occurring on or after July 1, 1997; Dec. Sp. Sess. P.A. 98-1 amended Subdivs. (3), (4) and (6) to exclude events held at the stadium facility, effective January 12, 1999; P.A. 99-121 added provision re tax reimbursement collected deemed to be a special fund in trust for the state, effective June 3, 1999, and applicable to periods commencing on or after July 1, 1999; P.A. 99-173 increased exemption for the admissions charges to motion pictures of $5 or less in Subdiv. (1) and added exemptions for Stafford Motor Speedway, Lime Rock Park, Thompson Speedway, Waterford Speedbowl, the Bridgeport Harbor Yard Stadium, and the games of the Waterbury Spirit and New Haven Ravens in Subdiv. (5), effective June 23, 1999, and applicable to sales occurring on or after July 1, 1999; P.A. 99-241 deleted stadium facility and added sportsplex in Subdivs. (3), (4) and (6), effective July 1, 1999; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 99-1 exempted events at New Britain Stadium from tax, effective for events occurring on or after the date such stadium was placed in service, and exempted games of the New Britain Rock Cats in Subdiv. (5), effective July 1, 1999; P.A. 00-140 deleted references to the former Hartford sportsplex and added references to the stadium facility as defined in Sec. 32-651, effective May 2, 2000; P.A. 00-170 divided section into Subsecs. (a) and (b), added exemptions for the Connecticut Exposition Center and cabarets formerly subject to the repealed cabaret tax and phased down the tax on motion picture show admissions to 8% on and after July 1, 2000, and 6% on and after July 1, 2001, effective July 1, 2001, and applicable to charges occurring on or after that date; P.A. 06-186 amended Subsec. (a)(5)(A) by adding exemption to tax for Nature's Art, and commencing on or after November 1, 2006, Dodd Stadium and Arena at Harbor Yard, effective May 7, 2006, and applicable to admission charges imposed on or after April 1, 2006; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 07-1 added reference to the Connecticut Convention Center in Subsec. (a)(5), effective July 1, 2007; P.A. 10-146 amended Subsec. (a) by making technical changes in Subdivs. (3) and (4), designating existing Subdiv. (9) as Subdiv. (10), and adding exemption for interscholastic athletic events as new Subdiv. (9), effective July 1, 2010, and applicable to admission charges imposed on or after that date; P.A. 11-6 amended Subsec. (a) by deleting former Subdiv. (5) re exemption from tax for events at Hartford Civic Center, New Haven Coliseum, Beehive Stadium, New Britain Stadium, New Britain Veterans Memorial Stadium, Harbor Yard Stadium, Stafford Motor Speedway, Lime Rock Park, Thompson Speedway, Waterford Speedbowl, facilities owned by the Tennis Foundation of Connecticut, William A. O'Neill Convocation Center, Connecticut Exposition Center, Nature's Art, Connecticut Convention Center, Dodd Stadium, and the Arena at Harbor Yard, and for games of the New Britain Rock Cats, New Haven Ravens or Waterbury Spirit, and redesignating existing Subdivs. (6) to (10) as Subdivs. (5) to (9), effective January 1, 2012, and applicable to admission charges imposed on or after that date; P.A. 14-47 amended Subsec. (a) by adding Subdiv. (10) re events at the XL Center in Hartford, effective July 1, 2014; P.A. 14-217 amended Subsec. (a)(10) by designating provision re XL Center as Subpara. (A) and adding Subpara. (B) re events at the Webster Bank Arena in Bridgeport, effective July 1, 2014; P.A. 15-184 amended Subsec. (a) by adding Subdiv. (11) re athletic event presented by member team of Atlantic League of Professional Baseball at Ballpark at Harbor Yard in Bridgeport, effective July 1, 2015; P.A. 15-244 made identical change in Subsec. (a) as P.A. 15-184, effective July 1, 2015; May Sp. Sess. P.A. 16-3 amended Subsec. (a) by adding Subdiv. (12) re event presented at Dunkin' Donuts Park in Hartford and adding Subdiv. (13) re athletic event presented by member team of Atlantic League of Professional Baseball at New Britain Stadium, effective June 2, 2016; June Sp. Sess. P.A. 17-2 amended Subsec. (a)(5) by deleting “subdivision (d) of” re Sec. 17a-310, effective October 31, 2017, and deleting Subdivs. (10) to (13) re exemptions for XL Center, Webster Bank Arena, Ballpark at Harbor Yard, Dunkin' Donuts Park and New Britain Stadium, respectively, effective December 1, 2017; P.A. 19-117 amended Subsec. (a) by adding Subdiv. (10) re exemption for Dunkin' Donuts Park on and after July 1, 2020, designating existing provision re tax on motion picture show as Subsec. (b)(4), added new Subsec. (b) re reduction in tax for certain venues and events, and redesignated existing Subsec. (b) as Subsec. (c), and made technical and conforming changes, effective July 1, 2019, and applicable to sales made on or after July 1, 2019.

Sec. 12-554. Appeal. Any taxpayer aggrieved because of any order, decision, determination or disallowance of the Commissioner of Revenue Services under the provisions of this chapter may, not later than thirty days after service upon the taxpayer of notice of such order, decision, determination or disallowance, take an appeal therefrom to the superior court for the judicial district of New Britain, which shall be accompanied by a citation to the Commissioner of Revenue Services to appear before said court. Such citation shall be signed by the same authority, and such appeal shall be returnable at the same time and served and returned in the same manner, as is required in case of summons in a civil action. The authority issuing the citation shall take from the appellant a bond or recognizance to the state of Connecticut, with surety to prosecute the appeal to effect and to comply with the orders and decrees of the court in the premises. Such appeals shall be preferred cases to be heard, unless cause appears to the contrary, at the first session by the court or by a committee appointed by it. Said court may grant such relief as may be equitable and, if such tax has been paid prior to the granting of such relief, may order the Treasurer to pay the amount of such relief, with interest at the rate of two-thirds of one per cent per month or fraction thereof, to the aggrieved taxpayer. If the appeal has been taken without probable cause, the court may tax double or triple costs, as the case demands; and, upon all such appeals which may be denied, costs may be taxed against the appellant at the discretion of the court, but no costs shall be taxed against the state.

(1971, P.A. 837, S. 17; 1972, P.A. 108, S. 1; P.A. 76-436, S. 326, 681; P.A. 77-614, S. 139, 610; P.A. 78-280, S. 5, 6, 127; P.A. 88-230, S. 1, 12; P.A. 89-343, S. 16, 17; P.A. 90-98, S. 1, 2; P.A. 93-142, S. 4, 7, 8; P.A. 95-26, S. 28, 52; 95-220, S. 4-6; P.A. 99-215, S. 24, 29; P.A. 19-186, S. 22.)

History: 1972 act substituted court of common pleas for superior court, effective September 1, 1972, except that courts with cases pending retain jurisdiction; P.A. 76-436 substituted superior court for court of common pleas, effective July 1, 1978; P.A. 77-614 substituted commissioner of revenue services for tax commissioner, effective January 1, 1979; P.A. 78-280 substituted judicial district of Hartford-New Britain for Hartford county; P.A. 88-230 replaced “judicial district of Hartford-New Britain” with “judicial district of Hartford”, effective September 1, 1991; P.A. 89-343 increased the rate of interest on the amount of relief ordered by the court from 6% to 9% per annum; P.A. 90-98 changed the effective date of P.A. 88-230 from September 1, 1991, to September 1, 1993; P.A. 93-142 changed the effective date of P.A. 88-230 from September 1, 1993, to September 1, 1996, effective June 14, 1993; P.A. 95-26 lowered interest rate from 9% per annum to 0.66% per month, effective July 1, 1995, and applicable to taxes due and owing on or after July 1, 1995, whether or not those taxes first became due before said date; P.A. 95-220 changed the effective date of P.A. 88-230 from September 1, 1996, to September 1, 1998, effective July 1, 1995; P.A. 99-215 replaced “judicial district of Hartford” with “judicial district of New Britain”, effective June 29, 1999; P.A. 19-186 replaced “within one month” with “not later than thirty days”, effective July 8, 2019.