Analysis

Tribal Treaty Right May Sway Justices In Wash. Tax Fight

Law360 (November 2, 2018, 8:27 PM EDT) -- The U.S. Supreme Court weighed whether a Yakama Nation company should be subject to a Washington state fuel tax during oral arguments over the past week, and attorneys say the tribe's chances for success hinge on the court’s apparent willingness to endorse a strong tribal treaty right to conduct business using off-reservation highways.

Several justices showed they were receptive to the idea that the Yakama tribe's right to travel on public highways under its 1855 federal treaty encompasses transporting goods on those roads, however a state licensing agency seeks to define its tax in order to apply it to wholesale fuel importer...

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