U.S. Supreme Court backs Michigan truck fees

The U.S. Supreme Court upheld yesterday the state of Michigan’s $100 annual fee imposed on trucks engaged in intrastate hauling

The U.S. Supreme Court upheld yesterday the state of Michigan’s $100 annual fee imposed on trucks engaged in intrastate hauling, in spite of a suit initiated by the American Trucking Assns. (ATA) [No. 03-1230] alleging it discriminates against interstate carriers and violates commerce laws.

ATA argued that the fee burdens interstate trade because trucks carrying both interstate and intrastate loads typically do less intrastate business than trucks that only carry intrastate loads.

Justice Stephen Breyer wrote that because the fee is imposed only on intrastate transactions. “It does not facially discriminate against interstate or out-of-state activities or enterprises. It applies even handedly to all carriers making domestic journeys and does not reflect an effort to tax activity taking place outside the State.”

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