President Tommy Remengesau, Jr. said that the national government will be seeking the expertise of the Attorney General (AG) to review if the new law passed by Airai State imposing “impact fee” on all businesses clashes with the national law.

In a press conference held on Wednesday, December 19, at the Presidential Office in Meyuns, Remengesau said that although Airai State has the authority to propose taxes for its people, the national constitution says that people should not be double taxed.

“We are also aware of what are within the purview or the responsibility of the national government to operate or supervise or even set fees and taxes and those are within the confines of the authorities of the national government,” Remengesau said.

Remengesau said that he had not yet seen the full details of the law but he will ask the AG to review it to know whether it conflicts with the national law.

Island Times previously reported that Airai State had passed a law on September 25, 2018 to reduce business licensing fees for businesses operating in the state. The state law, however, placed an impact fee that range from $10,000 to as low as $25 depending on the type of businesses and this includes airlines.

Among the businesses to be charged include airlines or air transport and inter-air services which are said to be under the national government’s jurisdiction.

The state law cited that the reason for charging impact fee for all businesses, regardless of their nature, is that they usually bring “certain added burden and cost” to the state. (Rhealyn C. Pojas)