Calif. Gets Pala Band's Fuel Tax Challenge Tossed

Law360 (April 16, 2021, 9:09 PM EDT) -- A California federal judge has dismissed the Pala Band of Mission Indians' suit seeking to block the state from imposing taxes on the tribe's on-reservation fuel sales, saying the tribe's claims fail because the incidence of the state's use tax for motor vehicles falls on fuel buyers rather than the tribe itself.

The federally recognized Southern California tribe contended that it was immune to the tax, arguing that the incidence of the tax is on the tribe and is therefore preempted by the federal Indian Trader Statutes.

U.S. District Judge Anthony J. Battaglia said in an order dismissing the case Thursday...

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