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Supreme Court agrees to hear tribal gas tax case

The U.S. Supreme Court agreed to hear an appeal from the state of Kansas to impose a gas distribution tax on the Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation.

The 10th Circuit Court of Appeals ruled last August that the state had no right to interfere with the tribe's commerce. In a unanimous decision, the court said the balance of factors tipped towards the tribe, which imposes its own taxes on all customers at the tribal gas station.

The state appealed the decision and is supported by the Multistate Tax Commission. The state is trying to impose its tax on other tribes in the state.

In a separate action, the Supreme Court refused to hear the state of Idaho's attempt to impose a gas tax on the reservation. The issue in the case was different from the Kansas one and Idaho's law imposing the tax was previously found to be illegal by a state court.

Get the Story:
Top court to weigh reservation gas tax (AP 2/28)

Court Decision:
Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation v. Richards (10th Circuit August 2004)

Court Briefs:
Richard v. Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation (NCAI-NARF Supreme Court Project)

Related Decision:
Coeur d'Alene Tribe v. Hammond (9th Circuit August 2004)

Relevant Links:
Prairie Band Potawatomi Nation -
Multistate Tax Commission -

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