Former Alaska Gov. and defeated GOP vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin did not report construction of two new cabins built on property she partially owns and has failed to pay taxes on the new construction.
Local tax officials haven’t issued tax assessments for the two-story, house-sized cabins, a workshop and a sauna spotted Thursday in an aerial survey. Palin did pay $156.13 in property taxes in 2009 — but did not notify the local about the new construction nearly 100 miles north of Anchorage.
Local tax officials discovered the unreported structures in a scheduled aerial survey of properties in the area on Thursday. The area is accessible only by floatplane, snowmobile or four-wheeler.
Dave Dunivan, assessor for the Matanuska-Susitna Borough, said the last survey was five years ago, before the cabins were built.
Palin’s attorney, Thomas Van Flein, claims it is not the responsibility of property owners to report structures they build on the land.
“It is the borough’s job,” claimed in an e-mail to The Associated Press. “The property taxes on this parcel are fully paid and have never been delinquent.”
Dunivan, however, said owners are required by state law to report any omissions or errors in their tax assessments. Often, the borough learns of new structures in remote areas when neighbors report them. Dunivan said no one has called the borough on the Palin lots, among many in the region to add structures, the flyover survey found.
“Typically, if there are errors, we hear from owners,” he said. “If there are omissions, we don’t. Every once in a while we do have someone call us about omissions, but not often.”