The provisions of RCW 84.36.171-84.36.174, relating to the "free port" exemption from property taxation, do not permit the exemption to be obtained through use of a formula whereby the total volume of tax exempt in-transit property would be regarded to be a certain percentage of the taxpayer's total year-end inventory which percentage would be computed by multiplying the percentage of total purchases which were received by the taxpayer from out-of-state sources during the year by the percentage of total sales which were shipped by him to out-of-state purchasers during the same year.
(1) Grains, flours, fruit, fruit products, vegetables, vegetable products, fish and fish products which are specifically granted a limited property exemption by RCW 84.36.140-84.36.162, may also be exempt under the provisions of RCW 84.36.171-84.36.174. AGO 63-64 No. 99. (2) A taxpayer need not have actual orders for specific goods with a determined out-of-state destination at the time the property is brought into this state or when the affidavit for exemption is filed in order to obtain the exemption accorded by RCW 84.36.171, et seq. (3) The exemptions of goods provided by RCW 84.36.171 will apply only when it is shown that the specific goods listed in the affidavit were the identical goods which were later shipped out of state by the date required.
Where property of the type designated in RCW 84.36.171 is brought into the state, held in storage in a public or private warehouse within the county, kept physically segregated, and then shipped out of the state by the end of the year in which a "free port" tax exemption is claimed, this exemption must be denied if, while being held in storage within this state, it is subjected to some process which changes its form or nature; e.g., bending or cutting metal rails, laminating plywood, custom cutting and shaping of structural "I" beams, etc.