Shipboard sales loophole

Posted: Sunday, April 20, 2003

Tourism spending this year in Juneau is estimated at $94 million. Multiply by the 5 percent sales tax equals $4.7 million in tax revenue. This would be awesome! However Juneau does not receive nearly this much from this tax source. Why not? Here's the loophole: tours such as, flightseeing, fish charters, rafting trips, whale watching, etc. that are sold on the tourist ships are exempt from paying CBJ sales tax.

Fixing South Franklin near the cruise ship dock, Auke Bay harbor so buses can turn around, or rescuing tourists when their raft turns over, the economic impact of tourism on CBJ services is high. I love tourism in Juneau and hope it continues to grow. Tourism in Juneau should pay for the services it receives.

I say let's change the loophole to help with the current CBJ budget problem. Here's my suggestion: All tours originating in Juneau should be subject to CBJ sales tax. If you agree, please call Assembly members and let them know how you feel.

Mark Kasberg

Juneau



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