JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) - The cruise industry has dodged a tax increase after Alaska's U.S. senators helped strike the provision from the tax bill that passed the Senate.
The bill approved early Saturday includes other provisions that Alaska Republican Sens. Lisa Murkowski and Dan Sullivan hailed as significant for Alaskans, including allowing oil and gas drilling on the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.
Murkowski called the package "a critical milestone in our efforts to secure Alaska's future."
The measure also would provide tax benefits for Alaska Native corporations to encourage contributions to trusts that promote the health, education and welfare of beneficiaries and to help the funds grow.
This summer, more than 1 million tourists came to the state on cruise ships.