The governor’s vetoes have dominated the conversation about the economy lately. As the economic burden shifts from the state to local governments, incoming revenue gains new significance, but tax returns in Haines were lackluster this last quarter.
Sales taxes from the first quarter of the year–from January to March–were low. Returns were down nearly 4% from last year at this time. That’s despite a boost from newly collected tax from certain online retailers.
Borough Finances Director Jila Stuart says that’s unusual, but explainable. The borough eliminated the sales tax for long term rentals in November, which cost the borough $14,000 in tax revenue. Long term rentals are leases of 9 months or more.
A dip in winter tourism cost the borough about $8,000. They chalk that up to a poor heli-skiing season.
Online sales taxes are a new stream of revenue, but the $14,000 dollars they brought in this year didn’t quite make up for the losses.