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

Palin told to pay back taxes

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/02/06/art.getty.palin.jpg caption="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. katiec

    Believe all politicians running for office released their complete tax returns except for Palin. "Somehow" that request got lost in the
    If I lived in Alaska I would be outraged over my taxpayer dollars
    paying the governor for expenses for refusing to live where it is designated. And, meals for the family? Do hope they dig deeper
    and expose other abuses.

    February 18, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  2. jake

    Standing there with her hands out! Robbing the state of Alaska!

    February 18, 2009 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  3. Connie

    What an idiot!

    February 18, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  4. AEK

    Of course since she's a conservative Republican, it's completely different from the recent issues surrounding President Obama's cabinet choices. It's like Rush Lamebrain criticizing someone for having a substance abuse or obesity issue!

    February 18, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  5. Ken

    Let's see,
    Mccain and Palin still making Headlines?

    It is Obama's time...You two go away please!

    February 18, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  6. ZANE

    She's entitles...and NO, she won't pay it back, she's Sarah palin, Gov. of Alaska!

    February 18, 2009 11:22 am at 11:22 am |
  7. KLS

    I'm not surprised by the outcome. Wonder why it took so long to be resolved?

    February 18, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  8. J S Ragman

    Everyone needs to make sure this is kept in the news. I wonder if Fox News will mention this?! Probably not but that is expected of that self-proclaimed news channel.

    February 18, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  9. C W

    I'm curious to hear how Palin's supporters will rationalize her behavior in this matter. Another example of "gotcha" media? Prejudice because she's a woman? Persecution because she's a Christian?

    How about plain old hypocrisy and stupidity? Palin's responsible for her own actions – and if she didn't know that what she did was illegal in taking the money for travel expenses while living in her own home, well, then, she more than deserves all the ridicule that's been directed toward her.

    February 18, 2009 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  10. Jackie in Dallas

    Let's see, ethics violations, misuse of power, illegal collection of per diem payments, and now non-payment of taxes on what is CLEARLY income? Quite the poster child for the Republican Party...

    Gee, a nice Governor Mansion in Juneau, which just happens to be the capital and where the Alaskan Legislature meets is not good enough for the Palins? So I presume you Republicans would have no problems with the Obamas staying in their Chicago home, and charging their living expenses there to the US Government on a per diem basis? Oh, please, if this were a Democratic Governor, you'd be eating her alive!

    February 18, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  11. Lost in Texas FOREVER

    Gov Palin owes back taxes? FOR SHAME.....I only thought Democrats didn't pay their taxes. Maybe there is a place for her in the president's cabinet.

    February 18, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  12. Zenith

    Good, she is not VP. But Geithner is still the Treasury Secretary who enforces the tax laws.

    February 18, 2009 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  13. Bubba

    I had a Maverick, but the wheels fell off.

    February 18, 2009 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  14. PATC

    Note who did the investigation. She did. I ask everybody to read IRS Pub 463 before passing judgement on this. It is very unclear. She should be admired for getting clarification on this. Unlike Geithner who was giving money to pay Payroll taxes.

    February 18, 2009 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  15. Klaus

    Where are all the right-wing Palin lovers who, just last week, were ranting and raving about how no one on their side ever would make a mistake like Daschle's?

    February 18, 2009 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  16. Ed Barczak

    And America thought she was a small time (town) politician! Hell she dodges tax issues just like the pros. She fits right in. Time to impeach her.

    February 18, 2009 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  17. mk

    so, is this an error on her part, or is it an attempt to bilk the Government.
    It is a fair question. If this woman is going to continue to appear in the headlines then it only makes sense to ask questions about her motives.

    February 18, 2009 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  18. William

    A reformer...a maverick...yeah, right!

    She's just another sponge, soaking up taxpayer money.

    February 18, 2009 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  19. MDM-Real VA

    Who really cares... she is not even close to being the Republican Dream Girl for 2012....The Republican contenders are:

    Uncle Tom...oops Micheal Steele

    and the Wack Job in Minority Leader,.... I can't even think of Mr. Slam Dunk" who slammed 1100 pages on the Senate floor!

    February 18, 2009 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  20. iamsensor

    I really hate her... She should be kicked out of the goverment.

    February 18, 2009 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  21. Michael M, Phoenix AZ

    Gee, a Republican that "forgot to pay taxes", how novel is that?

    February 18, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  22. Sam

    wow surprise surprise, the "small town" governor has done it again

    February 18, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  23. Mike

    Let's see, the first two paragraph on this site is about Palin and Mccain and Obama who is the President is pushed further down.....

    We will see what they will reporting on Palin and Mccain in 6weeks.....

    I personally think this is racism at its finest.

    Thank You President Obama for cruising on each time the media do this. We love you!

    February 18, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  24. Ghost

    Ha! It was beyond shady that she was taking that per diem while sitting at home anyway. That is not a mistake, that is trying to beat the system. Another example of shady politics. I wonder if Alaskans will be looking to bring her back in the next election? She has alot of skeletons in her closet between this and her being found guilty of abusing her powers. Well, not guilty in the sense of a trial, but thru an investigation.

    February 18, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  25. ERNIE

    What a mess, one after another, no wonder we have the
    problems in this country.

    February 18, 2009 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
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