February 18th, 2009
06:40 PM ET
5 years ago

Palin told to pay back taxes

Palin received per diem payments even though she was staying in her own home.
Palin received per diem payments even though she was staying in her own home.

(CNN) – Alaska officials have told Gov. Sarah Palin she must pay back taxes on the thousands of dollars she received in state per diem funds while living at her home in Wasilla.

The Washington Post first reported last September that Palin had billed the state for nearly $17,000 worth of meals and other living expenses while staying in her own home during the first 19 months of her administration, even though the official governor’s residence is in Juneau.

The news clouded Palin’s self-styled image as a small government reformer, just weeks after she was tapped as John McCain’s running mate. At the time, Palin’s office said the governor was entitled to the payments.

Alaska administration commissioner Annette Kreitzner told the Anchorage Daily News on Tuesday that the governor’s office had asked the office to review the tax treatment of the per diem payments after questions about the funds were raised.

Kreitzner told the paper that following the review, the per diem payments will be treated as income and that a revised W-2 statement will be sent to the governor.

Palin’s office would not say how much she owes in back taxes, or if she would continue to receive the payments.

UPDATE: Palin spokesman Bill McAllister tells CNN that Palin "will abide by all IRS regulations and rulings and will pay what she owes. That number, though, is not a matter of public record."

Post updated 3:02 p.m. EST


Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (440 Responses)
  1. Corey of Orygun

    What is the problem here?

    The rich don't pay taxes in America. Warren Buffett could have told you that!

    February 18, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  2. Jerry Harris

    Her collecting per diem while living in her own house would be like most people going to work and when they go home in the evening charging their company for living in their own house. Someone needs to tell Moose Palin that she can't have it both ways. If things continue that way up in Alaska they will be put in the same catagory as Illinois. Moose Palin and Blogvich should team up and run on the same ticket, they may not win but you could bet they would have the biggest ego's.

    February 18, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  3. ATR

    The point is not that she didn't pay taxes she owed, I'll conceed it was probably an innocent error. The point is that when Geitner and Dashle made similar mistakes the republicans were alleging they are "tax cheats." So I guess that makes Palin a tax cheat by republican standards. Live by the sword, die by the sword, as they say.

    February 18, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  4. Nathan

    As a conservative, Gov. Palin needs to get out of national politics. Whatever credibility she may have had is gone after the primary and now this. She will never save the Republican Party, as some people seem to be hoping. Make way for Mitt in 2012.

    February 18, 2009 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  5. Jothedemocrat

    Remember jo the plumber with his tax problem?
    Now Ms GOP Diva owes some back taxes. Wow amazing
    I thought it was only democrats. I'am just shaking my head. I am waiting for the next IRS audit person to show up at my house. They will hear a lot from me.
    Hello FIX NOISE THERE IS A STORY HERE ON CNN can you cover that? I guess not.

    February 18, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  6. Michelle

    She's a public official receiving the public's tax dollars, therefore, IT IS A PUBLIC MATTER. Hopefully, she'll continue to screw up and work her way OUT of office and never be able to be considered for any other public office in the future.

    February 18, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  7. keeth in california

    The amount of taxes owed is MOST CERTAINLY NOT a private matter.

    February 18, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  8. slkwly

    HHHmmmm....first, Joe the-not-really-a-plumber-or business owner-turned war-correspondent is found to owe back taxes, and now the person who could've been the VP ,owes back taxes on money she collected while living in her own home instead of the governors mansion like she is supposed to.....wow....the hypocrisy is definitely in both parties, but as soon as one party starts criticizing the other, more 'bones' start coming out of their closets...too funny.

    Oh, and this will only be a by-line on Fox (Faux) News, if at all......

    February 18, 2009 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  9. Buzzy Bobby

    “The amount of taxes owed is a private matter,” Palin spokeswoman said. Really??? Since when is the amount of taxes owed by a person in the US government a 'private matter'? Does this only apply to Palin because she's so darn special?

    February 18, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  10. Alaskan speaks

    She was told her W2's would be changed to reflect the per diem....after SHE requested the review. How does that equate to her trying to avoid taxes? BTW, the same news was received by many Alaskan state empoyees and even the former mayor of Anchorage, now Senator Begich. But for some this will always only be about Sarah Palin, right?

    February 18, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  11. Uncle Ellsworthy

    Wonder how many commenting on here actually know the ALASKA state law on this

    February 18, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  12. Madame

    Please, Sarah, say it ain't so, say it ain't so

    February 18, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  13. brett

    This says exactly what I have allways felt about this lady, she is shady!! I truly hope the repugnant party puts her up as numebr one in 2012. Maybee she should take some of her money that she got illegally and put it on her husbands dog sled and help the starving people of her state. Have not heard about her doing anything to help them out either have we? People are starving to death in her state right now as we speak because of the early winter freeze. Where is the outrage? where is the please for help for them? no she is pressing for a pipeline, not food aide or relief for the poor starving people. She makes me ill!!!!

    February 18, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  14. knowlege

    First, It was the Republicans whining and complaining about a few members in the new administration not paying their taxes and now they have one of their own that didn't pay her taxes. Why is Mitt Romney selling a few of his houses??? tax problems??? Pay your taxes as well Republican senators. They need to investigate John Boehner. He is always complaining.

    February 18, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  15. Scott

    Looks like she should be receiving a nomination to fill an Obama Cabinet post any day. She's met the first qualification.

    February 18, 2009 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  16. Darin

    Just another greedy republican...c'mon Palin, just pay the darn taxes! It's the right thing to do, and it's the law. Besides, you're wealthy, you can afford it, or have your PAC funy pay them. Either way, PAY THEM!

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  17. Sandy Carey

    White trash – of the worst kind. Good lord, this woman may have held high office in this country?! Thanks John for your lack of integrity and for caring not a farthing about this nation.

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  18. Common Sense

    But..................She's a REFORMER!!!!!!

    Right?

    Right??

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  19. Carl Justus

    I would guess that she expects a great big tax cut and wanted to save the state of Alaska the trouble of having to send back a check and save the postage along with the cost of having to gather all the information concerning the rebate.

    That is what the republicans live for is to cut taxes for themselves and the richest of the land so the middle class will have less to support some one to run for office that is willing to lay their party on the line by paying for what they order instead of borrowing 1.90 BILLION DOLLARS A DAY TO SUPPORT MASSIVE TAX CUTS FOR THE RICHEST.

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  20. Missy

    I agree with Colin, RI.... Every potential addition to President Obama's cabinet is being held under the microscope where 'back taxes' are concerned. Fair enough. But it looks like we would have had a few issues if the 'other side won too (shudder.... ). Of course most of us knew that, right?

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  21. Doug

    Listening to the Republican on Dems don't pay taxes. Did Palin switch parties. Hope they treat her like they did Daschel.

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  22. Cleaning up after W

    Hmm... 18 comments so far, and I haven't seen one person come to her defense. Where are you, pals of Palin??? It's only fun to criticize public officials for owing back taxes when it's a Democrat at fault, huh? GOP = Hypocrites.

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  23. Frances

    So- the Governor asked her own Administration commissioner to review the tax treatment of the per diem,I am guessing to PAY THE TAXES! after questions were raised. Snarks who commented : think about that before posting.

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  24. Obama 2.0

    No, she wants tax cuts not taxes cuting on her!

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  25. lived9lives Southern Oregon

    Whaaaat? She won't disclose the amount she owes? It's a private matter? I guess when she heard Obama talking about transparency she heard "transparentcy"!
    Troopergate, book banning, contempt citations, wolf slaughtering, $6,000 for makeup, closed Wasilla special needs clinic , daughter talking back and now owes back taxes? Shout it out "Poor, poor, Sarah" Wink. Wink.

    February 18, 2009 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18