The Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration ("DFA") recently ruled that land use memberships for hunting access were not taxable. The taxpayer provided individuals memberships allowing exclusive hunting access to its lands. The individuals paid for hunting access only. They did not receive additional benefits or services beyond access to the land.
Arkansas taxes sales of admissions to places of amusement or athletic, entertainment, or recreational events. This includes fees for the privilege of having access to or the use of amusement, entertainment, athletic, or recreational facilities. The tax applies regardless of whether the seller calls the charged fee a membership. However, Arkansas does not tax membership fees for hunting clubs or fees for hunting. Taxing the land use memberships for hunting contradicted the position of the state. So, tax did not apply to the land use memberships.