Business Taxes

Admissions tax

SMC 08.03

An admissions tax in an amount of 5% of the admission charge is levied on every person paying an admission charge to any place or event. The tax further applies to amounts paid by others, where a person is admitted free of charge or at reduced rates to any place or event, for which other persons pay a charge or a regular higher charge for the same privilege or accommodations.

For events held in the Spokane Convention Center, First Interstate Center for the Arts or Spokane Veterans Memorial Arena, admissions tax is paid to the Spokane Public Facilities District (SPFD). Visit the SPFD website for more information. Please contact the SPFD for filing requirements.

Gambling tax

SMC 08.04

Pre-registration (PDF 41 KB): Any person, association or organization proposing to conduct a gambling activity taxable under this chapter is required to pre-register to indicate intent and provide a copy of the license for such activity issued by the Washington State gambling commission.

There is levied upon every person, association and organization conducting or operating within the City any gambling activity authorized by state law a tax upon gross receipts or gross revenues of the activity as follows:

  • Amusement Games: 2% of gross receipts from the amusement game less the amount awarded as prizes except as otherwise provided. [RCW 9.46.110(3)(b)]
  • Bingo Games or Raffles: Gross receipts less the amount awarded as cash or merchandise prizes during the taxable period, multiplied by 5% or the maximum rate permitted by law, whichever is greater. [RCW 9.46.110(3)(a)]
  • Punchboards and Pull Tabs: 10% of gross receipts from the operation of the games, less the amount awarded as cash or merchandise prizes. [RCW 9.46.110(3)(e)]
  • Social Card Games: 15% of gross revenue from such games, effective January 1, 2006. The rate shall be reduced to ten percent effective January 1, 2007.

The tax is not imposed with respect to amusement or bingo games or raffles, or a combination of these activities, conducted by a bona fide charitable or nonprofit organization which has:

  • No paid operating or management personnel; and has
  • Gross receipts from these activities not exceeding five thousand dollars per year, less the amount awarded as prizes. [RCW 9.46.110(3)(c)]

Tax Payment:

  • Signed tax returns and payments are due and payable quarterly on the last day of the month next following the end of each quarter, namely, by January 31st, April 30th, July 31st and October 31st.
  • Annual filing may be granted if a taxpayer's annual tax liability is less than twenty dollars.
  • Whenever a taxpayer quits or disposes of the business, he shall within ten days make a return and pay the accrued tax due.
  • When a taxpayer is operating on a short-term or transitory basis, or when there is reason to believe collection of the tax may be in jeopardy, the chief financial officer, upon notice, may require reporting and remittance at intervals shorter than quarterly or annually.
  • Failure to file and make full payment of taxes due in a timely manner will result in the assessment of interest and penalties.

Gambling Tax Return Form (PDF 74 KB)

Property tax

Spokane County Treasurer's Office collects all property tax, including properties located in the City of Spokane. Please contact the Spokane County Treasurer's office at 509.477.4713 or visit their website.

Utility tax

SMC 08.10

There is levied upon and shall be collected from all persons engaging in the following utility business activities a utility gross receipts tax or license fee measured by multiplying the rate specified times the gross income as follows:

  • Selling, wheeling or furnishing electric light or power: 6% of gross income.
  • Selling, brokering or furnishing natural or manufactured gas for hire: 6% of gross income.
  • Providing solid waste collection service: 20% of gross income.
  • Operating a public wastewater collection and treatment system: 20% of gross income.
  • Providing telegraph service: 3.5% of gross income.
  • Engaging in the telephone business: 6%.
  • Selling or furnishing water for hire: 20% of gross income.
  • Providing cable, telecommunications or similar type service to the public which involves the use of the right-of-way for the installation of wires, cables, fixtures or other equipment, where not otherwise addressed in this section or prohibited by law: 6% of gross income.

Tax Payment:

  • Signed tax returns and payments are due and payable monthly on or before the twenty-fifth day following the tax period just ended, to be computed based upon the gross income of said tax period.
  • A filing period other than monthly may be allowed by written approval from the City Treasurer.
  • Failure to file and make full payment of taxes due in a timely manner will result in the assessment of interest and penalties.

Related Documents:

Other City, County, State and Federal Agencies

Washington State

Contact Information

Taxes & Licenses
1st Floor City Hall
808 W. Spokane Falls Blvd.
Spokane, WA 99201


Hours: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.