Maritime Industry:

Federal Assessments Levied on Commercial Vessels

RCED-93-65FS: Published: Mar 5, 1993. Publicly Released: Mar 12, 1993.

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Pursuant to a congressional request, GAO provided information on the amount of user fees, taxes, and other charges levied on the commercial maritime industry.

GAO found that: (1) in fiscal year (FY) 1991, 12 federal agencies levied 117 assessments that totalled $11.9 billion; (2) the assessments were to generate revenue or reimburse agencies for expenses incurred for various services; (3) in FY 1989, FY 1990, and FY 1991, the government collected $1.8 billion, $1.9 billion, and $1.9 billion, respectively; (4) projected collections for FY 92 are estimated at $2.1 billion; (5) amounts collected for Customs duties were several times greater than the amounts collected for other assessments; (6) of the 117 assessments, 92 were specific to and paid only by the maritime industry, while the remaining assessments were for other modes of transportation; (7) in FY 91, administrative processing and associated services collections totalled $521 million, physical services collections totalled $481 million, tax collections totalled $513 million, and miscellaneous services and Customs duties collections totaled $10.4 billion; and (8) vessel owners or operators paid the majority of taxes levied on the commercial maritime industry.

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