The Seminole Tribe
must pay taxes for gasoline that it purchases off the reservation, the Florida 4th District Court of Appeal
ruled on Wednesday.
The tribe filed a lawsuit against the Department of Revenue
to seek a refund for sales and excise taxes paid between January 2004 and February 2006.
The tribe purchased the fuel off the reservation but used it for governmental purposes on the reservation.
A trial judge sided with the tribe but the department appealed. In a unanimous ruling, the 4th District Court reversed and said the tribe can't use its sovereignty as a shield from state taxation.
"Off-reservation transactions, even by tribal members, are susceptible of [state] taxation without running afoul of the Indian Commerce Clause," the court wrote.
Get the Story:
Seminole Tribe must pay fuel taxes, court rules
(The South Florida Sun-Sentinel 6/23)
Florida Court of Appeal Decision:
Florida Department of Revenue v. Seminole Tribe
(June 22, 2011)
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