A legislature squabble has brewed over a proposed $100 per cruise passengers proposed by a State Representative. Governor Frank Murkowski( remember him,? He used to be the Alaska State Senator) contents such a tax is contrary to the law. He alleged it does not conform with section 445 of the National Security Legislation that stipulates "only the federal government can impose taxes on a ship operating in any navigational waters subject to the authority of the United States." Two Congressional members, Alaska Senator Ted Stevens and Congressman Don Young contend the Governor is mistaken..
These two honorable members of Congress contend they help write section 445 and it it was solely to prevent cities from charging a passenger tax where the ships do not dock but merely pass by such as Yakutat that has tried for years to impose a special tax.
This is the third year the legislature has been confronted with a passenger tax. In the past it was to be $50 per passenger. At this time the only passenger tax is $5 per passenger in Juneau. Princess Cruises has just made an agreement to resume using Whittier as a port for some of its ships provided the municipality. imposes to tax. Haines has apparently agreed to drop its passenger tax. Ketchikan has in the past voted down any passenger fees,