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Senate passes resolution against judicial taxation

February 20, 2001

Senate passes resolution against judicial taxation



By LAURA ERNDE / Staff Writer


ANNAPOLIS - The Maryland Senate on Tuesday narrowly passed Sen. Alex X. Mooney's resolution that aims to prevent courts from taxing citizens.

The resolution passed the Senate last year, but was killed by the House Judiciary Committee.

It asks the U.S. Congress to consider a constitutional amendment to prevent courts from causing tax increases through their rulings. Twenty-one other states have passed similar resolutions.

Mooney, R-Frederick/Washington, argued that judicial taxation is a violation of the separation of powers.

The legislature in Hawaii is grappling with a court decision that will result in a $400 million tax increase, he said.

An opponent of the resolution argued that judicial taxation is not a problem and the Maryland General Assembly should be careful about the messages it sends to Congress.

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"It's a message we probably shouldn't send," said Sen. Brian E. Frosh, D-Montgomery.

The resolution passed by a vote of 24 to 22. Sen. Donald F. Munson, R-Washington, voted in favor of the measure.

Mooney said he was surprised that 22 senators in effect voted to allow judicial taxation.

"That is scary," he said.

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