Separate from the sales tax exemption, the Juneau Assembly had its first reading on an ordinance to earmark sales tax revenue to keep paying lawyers retained to fight the cruise industry’s lawsuit against the city.
The city’s finance department concluded last year that cruise ships are legally liable to collect local sales tax and could raise as much as $100,000 annually. But an ordinance considered by the Juneau Assembly on March 6 would exempt onboard transactions as a friendly gesture to the industry.
Ride-sharing company Uber left Alaska in 2015, agreeing not to return until a state law was in place that exempted the company from paying workers’ compensation insurance for its drivers.
Now, three state legislators are leading the effort to lay the groundwork for the company’s return, including a measure moving through the state House and one in the Senate.