Juneau to take up taxes for onboard purchases on ships - Must Read Alaska
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Thursday, October 1, 2020
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Juneau to take up taxes for onboard purchases on ships

The Juneau Assembly’s Finance Committee is considering a proposal that would tax any purchases that cruise ship passengers make onboard their cruise ship while it is docked in Juneau.

Currently, there are not cruise ships in Juneau and there likely won’t be any for 18 months, due to the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak. Cruise ship onboard purchases are exempt from the Juneau sales tax of 5 percent.

The proposal to tax onboard sales is buried in the 163-page packet that the Finance Committee will consider tonight.

Also in the packet for consideration is a proposal for mandatory disclosure of the sales price of real estate transactions. The State of Alaska does not require mandatory disclosure of the sales price for real estate transactions, but also doesn’t preclude home rule municipalities from their ability to write an ordinance requiring mandatory disclosure.

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Suzanne Downing had careers in business and journalism before serving as the Director of Faith and Community-based Initiatives for Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and returning to Alaska to serve as speechwriter for Gov. Sean Parnell. Born on the Oregon coast, she moved to Alaska in 1969.

Latest comments

  • Simple for the cruise ships to solve the leftist greed problem in Juneau. Close all onboard shops while docked there or avoid Juneau completely. Haines and Wrangell tried to hijack the cruise ships too. I guess everyone knows what happened there. Haines was written off the cruise ships’ port of call list and Wrangell is left holding their own bag. No cruise ships in Haines or Wrangell since. Juneau is biting the hand that feeds them. Leftists ruin every town/city the gain control of.

    • Amen, Ben Colder! I’ve noticed a lot of hand biting going on in the whole
      US right now. Sure doesn’t make sense to me.

    • Ben Colder,
      Despite the taxation bent in J-Town, it’s industry out strips that of Anchorage by a whooping sum, mining, fish and tourism.
      The Cruise Industry needs water, incinerated garbage and oh, a drive up Glacier. Juneau won’t be written off if and when tours resume.

      • Ben Colder,
        And now the Leftists want to run the counties too. Two different Oregon county sheriffs said NO to the Portland mayor, who was trying to get them involved in quelling the violent BLM and ANTIFA rioters. Leftists don’t quit until they are fully accorded and satisfied. And it’s all done under the pretext of “wanting to reach across the isle.”

      • OTA,
        You’re right. Cruise ships aren’t Juneau’s main source of income. Neither is mining or fishing. The main source of income in Juneau is government. Trouble there is, most ‘government’ enterprises are tax exempt. As far as payrolls, spin off enterprises, and entrepreneurship associated with governing Alaska, Juneau rocks. Not so in the other coastal communities in Alaska, with exceptions like Dutch Harbor, Dillingham and Kodiak. The income stream for most coastal communities is concentrated and intense during the summer months. Winter, another story.
        Most cruise ships now have onboard incinerators, onboard water makers (desalinating devices) and carry enough fuel and water to circumnavigate the globe. Don’t kid yourself that they really need any port in Alaska. There’s a ‘drive up glacier’ in Seward.

  • Another problem for Juneau and their tax scheme: What cruise ships? Sales tax revenue from nonexistent sales from nonexistent cruise ships is zero.

  • More elitist greed from Juneau. Honestly, these people must spend every waking moment of their life figuring out how to enrich themselves while screwing over everyone else.

  • LOL, time to move the Capitol from North Seattle once and for all. It has been approved by the public twice. Time for the sad little community to pay the repercussions of corruption

  • Nothing like killing the goose to get all those eggs out at once! And nothing like politicians who don’t know that story.

  • This is the same BS the City of Tacoma pulled on Home Depot. If you order from Home Depot a large item, it comes through the Tacoma Home Depot to go to Fife to get to here. When it leaves the Tacoma Home Depot, it costs 10% more for a Tacoma city tax. I refuse to pay that so I order direct from the manufacturer’s distributor and no 10%. Does the city of Juneau really believe that the Cruise ships won’t stop coming to Juneau if they keep trying to squeeze them? Idiot politicians, by and large, never operated a business, so they have no idea how the bottom line affects decisions.

  • It is surprising that Juneau is going after sales tax for the few onboard sales while the ship is in port in Juneau AND YET does not bother to collect sales tax from all shops that are seasonally located in Juneau *and* collect sales tax daily. If you call up the CBJ sales tax department (or contact the Juneau Empire newspaper) , you can get a list of the businesses that collect sales tax all season starting in May and then take it with them they close up their shops in September. Remitting sales tax collected seems to be on an “honor system” at CBJ and most summer businesses know this. Maybe the cruise ship have nothing substantial to worry about?

  • Taxation without representation, anyone? Cheers –

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