The $1 port fee is a charge that Ketchikan is charging the cruise line for specific port related services.
Thanks for this clerification. It now appears to me that it is a cost of doing business for the owner of the ship.
Rather than absorbing the cost, they are just passing 100% of the cost to their valued customers.
It is a part of business to make a profit, that means passing as much expense as you can down the line. Ketchikan is to blame here.
We had fish and chip at a place of the dock. The gentleman there said that the tax that was passed in 2005 and collected in 2006 hurt his business. He pays a business tax so the city got less from him. I am not sure what tax he was talking about however I picked up a "2007 cruise ship calendar" from the tourist center. On the back page it show visitors in 2005 at 921,429. In 2006 they were 838,880, that is 82,549 less people. Is the tax and the drop in visitors related? I do not know, we were there last year. I do not think it wise to bite the arm that feeds you.
I have sent this thread link to Visit-ketchikan.com. Perhaps they will provide some insight.