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Understanding Alaska Sales and Use Taxes

Filed under Sales Taxes. Fact checked on February 12, 2013.

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Understanding and complying with the sales tax requirements in the states in which you do business is absolutely essential. More states are taxing services, as well as retail sales, so you can not afford to be in the dark. In addition, you may be liable for use taxes for out-of-state purchases. This article answers some basic questions regarding sales tax in Alaska.

Alaska does not impose statewide sales and use, gross receipts, or occupational license taxes. However, various boroughs and municipalities do levy sales and use taxes. The combined city and borough sales tax rate can range from 0 percent to 7 percent.

Although there is a basic similarity in the ordinances levying a sales tax in the cities and boroughs of Alaska, there is no uniformity. Ordinances differ as to the minimum sum taxable, the return due date, the allowance of a discount, and the penalties. The ordinances also differ as to what is taxable and what is exempt from sales tax. For this reason no ordinance can be cited as a "typical" ordinance. You as a business person in Alaska will have to contact the city sales tax collector or administrator with your specific set of circumstances and locations.

Boroughs may collect a sales tax on sales, rents, and services provided within their borders. Boroughs may also levy and collect a use tax on the storage, use or consumption of tangible personal property in the borough.

Cities within boroughs that levy and collect sales and use taxes may levy sales and use taxes on all sources taxed by the borough. Cities not in boroughs imposing sales and use taxes may levy a sales and use tax as provided for boroughs.

To obtain the most current information about local sale taxes, consult the State of Alaska Community Database Online and do a custom search by city and sales tax.

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