Federal Court Enjoins Shaker Heights from Blocking Message of Tax-Increase Opponents

shtuCleveland, OH – Yesterday a federal court enjoined the City of Shaker Heights from further harassment of Shaker Heights residents city officials silenced through threat of a frivolous trademark lawsuit. The threat had come in retaliation for the citizens’ opposition to the City of Shaker Heights’ attempt to increase income taxes on residents through an August 7 vote.

The Northern District of Ohio Judge Christopher Boyko ordered that the City “shall take no action which interferes in any way with Plaintiffs’ use of the Shaker Heights Taxpayers Union Logo. . .

This Order comes in response to legal action filed on behalf of the Shaker Heights Taxpayers Union (“SHTU”). This legal action included a demand for an immediate injunction prohibiting city officials from engaging in any further threats, intimidation, or retaliation in response to the taxpayers’ legitimate exercise of their constitutional rights

Shaker Heights resident Mark Zetzer formed the SHTU to advocate against the City’s placement of a personal income tax increase on the August 7 ballot, arguing that Shaker Heights taxes were already the highest in the state. In addition Mr. Zetzer designed for the group a logo that parodies the City of Shaker Heights logo by replacing the City logo’s leaves with dollar signs, to represent City officials’ use of taxation as a first-resort (see the logo below).

Even though federal courts have repeatedly confirmed that the First Amendment trumps trademark law in the field of political speech, just as Mr. Zetzer’s message was beginning to gain traction, the City of Shaker Heights sent Mr. Zetzer a “Demand to Cease and Desist,” threatening that “[f]ailure to stop [use of the SHTU logo] will result in the City taking legal action to protect its trademark, including a request for an award of damages.”

In response, SHTU had been forced to stop using the logo in its campaign.

“This case featured an appalling attempt by city officials to silence anyone who stands in the way of their access to more of Shaker Heights residents’ earnings,” said Maurice Thompson, Executive Director of the 1851 Center. “The Court’s Order preserves the rights of Ohioans to effectively criticize their local governments, particularly as they push for more taxes, and further acknowledges that political speech parodying one’s government cannot be abridged.”

Added Thompson, “Conducting frivolous legal activity on city time is not just unethical – – it’s also a waste of public funds. If the City simply abstained from paying government employees to engage in activities such as instituting official-appearing legal threats to silence opposing viewpoints in the heat of an election, there would likely be no need to impose additional taxes on Shaker Heights residents.”

The logos at issue in this case are below:

L: City of Shaker Heights logo; R: Shaker Heights Taxpayers Union logo

 


July 27, 2012: Cleveland.com: Judge says Shaker Heights can’t stop anti-tax group’s use of logo

 

The 1851 Center’s Complaint can be viewed here.

The Motion for a Preliminary Injunction is available here.

Legal Center: Shaker Heights Threats to Tax-Increase Opponents Unconstitutional

shtuCleveland, OH – The 1851 Center for Constitutional Law today filed suit in federal court on behalf of Shaker Heights residents whom city officials threaten to silence through threat of a frivolous trademark lawsuit. The threat comes in retaliation for the citizens’ opposition of the City of Shaker Heights’ attempt to increase income taxes on residents through an August 7 vote.

The legal action, filed on behalf of the Shaker Heights Taxpayers Union (“SHTU”), includes a demand for an immediate injunction prohibiting city officials from engaging in any further threats, intimidation, or retaliation in response to the taxpayers’ legitimate exercise of their constitutional rights.

Shaker Heights resident Mark Zetzer formed the SHTU to advocate against the City’s placement of a personal income tax increase on the August 7 ballot, arguing that Shaker Heights taxes were already the highest in the state. In addition Mr. Zetzer designed for the group a logo that parodies the City of Shaker Heights logo by replacing the City logo’s leaves with dollar signs, to represent City officials’ use of taxation as a first-resort (see the logo below).

Federal courts have repeatedly confirmed that the First Amendment trumps trademark law in the field of political speech. Nevertheless, just as Mr. Zetzer’s message was beginning to gain traction, the City of Shaker Heights sent Mr. Zetzer a “Demand to Cease and Desist,” threatening that “[f]ailure to stop [use of the SHTU logo] will result in the City taking legal action to protect its trademark, including a request for an award of damages.” In response, SHTU has been forced to stop using the logo in its campaign.

Despite the City’s claims, given the clarity of the law on this issue, the City’s trademark concerns are simply a pretext to silence the SHTU from hindering the City’s efforts to raise taxes on its citizens. The lawsuit seeks to restore the right of taxpayers to engage in these types of debates without fear of officious-sounding but frivolous threats and intimidation from their own government.

“This is an appalling attempt by city officials to silence anyone who stands in the way of their access to more of Shaker Heights residents’ earnings,” said Maurice Thompson, Executive Director of the 1851 Center. “These types of case are why we formed the 1851 Center: to prevent city official from bullying those trying to limit government, who they know don’t have the means to fight back on their own.”

Added Thompson, “the City was counting on the reality that an average citizen would not understand the frivolity of its threats, given the complexities of intellectual property law. This case will help ensure that other cities do not use official-appearing legal threats to masquerade their efforts to silence limited-government viewpoints in the heat of a local tax election.”

The logos at issue in this case are below:

L: City of Shaker Heights logo;  R: Shaker Heights Taxpayers Union logo

 

July 13, 2012: Cleveland.com: Federal judge to discuss potential court injunction against Shaker Heights by anti-tax increase group

July 13, 2012: Cleveland.com: Shaker Heights agrees to let Shaker Heights Taxpayers’ Union use city logo in its materials

 

The 1851 Center’s Complaint can be viewed here.

The 1851 Center’s can be viewed here.

Westerville Taxpayers Move to Repeal March Tax Increase

On May 7, 2012 taxpayers for Westerville Schools, with the representation of the 1851 Center,commenced circulation of an initiative petition to repeal the 6.71 mil tax increase narrowly approved in March after taxpayers defeated a similar measure at the November 2011 general election.

The Westerville effort marks the inaugural action of the 1851 Center in assisting taxpayers in using a previously obscure section of the Ohio Revised Code to lower their school district tax burdens, while forcing Ohio school districts to control spending and reign in labor costs rather than raising taxes.

“For years, many disingenuous Ohio school districts have chosen political gamesmanship over fiscal responsibility, placing tax hikes on the ballot at low-turnout elections where their own constituents’ voices are disproportionately heard,” said 1851 Center Executive Director Maurice Thompson.  “The goal of our tax rollback project is to help taxpayers across the state fight back against this gamesmanship by subjecting the tax increase to the general election ballot.”

The 51-49 percent vote for the tax increase came just four months after a 61-39 defeat at the general election.

“We are particularly pleased to begin this project in Westerville, the highest-taxed school district in central Ohio, and also the longtime home of our Governor,” added Thompson.  “We hope that the Governor and other state officials take note of these local tax abuses and reform the policy statewide.  Until that time, we will vigorously address this issue.”

The 1851 Center has called on state officials to reduce the number of times per year school districts may place tax increases on the ballot from three to one – – the general election held each November.  Ohioans’ local government tax burden is the sixth highest in the nation, according to the Ohio Department of Taxation.

Westerville taxpayers have proposed specific cuts that would alleviate the need for the tax hike, noting that administrators enjoy luxurious benefits packages, the average teacher’s salary of over $65,000 (trending towards over $80,000 by 2014-15 at current spending rates) is amongst the highest in the state and significantly higher than salaries of average Westerville residents, and the district pays the salary of Westerville Education Association union officials to do union work that does not benefit the district or the taxpayers.

For the measure to appear on the November ballot, volunteers will need to submit 3,911 valid signatures to the Franklin and Delaware County Boards of Elections by August 9, 2012.

The 1851 Center’s guide on how taxpayers can roll back tax levies can be found here.

More information on Westerville School District finances and the tax repeal effort is available at TaxpayersForWestervilleSchools.com.

 

 

 

 

May 7, 2012: The Columbus Dispatch: Westerville Group wants to Pare Levy

May 7, 2012: The Republic: Constitutional Law Center helps Taxpayers

May 7, 2012: The Star Beacon: Ohio Law Center helps Taxpayers

May 7, 2012: 10TV: Group Collecting Signatures to Repeal Levy

May 7, 2012: Brian Wilson Radio Show:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

May 8, 2012: Ohio Votes: Effort Underway to Repeal Levy

May 8, 2012: NBC4: TV news coverage video

May 9, 2012: This Week: Group Seeks to Roll Back Levy

May 10, 2012: Ohio Liberty Coalition: Taxpayers Attempting to Repeal Narrowly Passed Levy

May 10, 2012: 610 WTVN: Maurice Thompson’s radio interview with Joel Riley

May 10, 2012: Media Trackers: Taxpayer Advocates Seek to Rein in School Spending

Center Provides A Guide to Reducing Your School District Tax Burden

Ohio school districts continue to surrender to political pressure at the collective bargaining table, failing to curtail school employees’ lucrative compensation packages. And while this undisciplined spending could manifest itself in the form of reasonable lay-offs or pay-cuts, history demonstrates it to be more likely that Ohioans across the state will soon confront a flurry of school district levy elections, oriented towards raising their property or income taxes.

So long as local taxpayers apply less pressure than public sector unions, this trend will continue. This guide is intended to teach you how to apply much-needed political pressure, and induce fiscal restraint, rather than profligacy, through the ballot box.

This Guide is a tutorial on how to use heretofore obscure parts of the law, alongside the initiative process, to roll back either a recently-enacted, or even a not-so-recently-enacted school levy tax.

Download the Citizens Guide to Reducing Your School District Tax Burden here.
Download a Petition for Repeal of School District Income Tax here.
Download a Petition for a Levy Decease here.

Oleksa v. Murray

 

 

In October of 2010, Mansfield-area taxpayers filed an Ohio Corrupt Activities Act complaint against Gov. Ted Strickland, Ohio School Facilities Commission (OSFC) Executive Director Richard Murray, the Laborers’ International Union of North America (LIUNA) and others. The taxpayers complained that members of the Strickland administration, organized labor, and Murray used the OSFC and school building construction contracts to engage in pattern of corrupt activities expressly prohibited under Ohio’s RICO laws.

The taxpayers charged that labor unions and Murray used bribery, intimidation, and obstruction of justice to further union financial interests, through projects funded by the OSFC, while the Strickland administration aided and abetted the conduct for its own political gain. The lawsuit sought to prohibit future distribution of state tax dollars by the OSFC to fund union-friendly “Project Labor Agreements” (PLAs) and prevailing wage-only projects.

“Project Labor Agreements” require non-union contractors to enroll their own employees as dues-paying members of a local union hall and abide by union work rules for the duration of the project.  It is typically infeasible for non-union contractors to bid on projects with PLAs, which results in the elimination of competitive bidding, and drives up the costs of projects.

“Prevailing Wage” is a wage rate that is set based upon the average wage paid to union workers in a particular locality.  It is typically well above the market wage rate, and its use reduces competitive bidding and drives up costs on projects.

According to the complaint, OSFC Executive Director Murray was at the center of the corrupt activity. Specifically, Murray attempted to pressure school districts, when building school buildings, into using PLAs, unduly rewarding those who do and retaliating against those who do not.

Additional allegations of bribery and intimidation by the union are corroborated in the complaint by former OSFC executive director Michael Shoemaker. The complaint alleges LIUNA was displeased with Shoemaker’s unwillingness to strong-arm school districts into using PLAs. According to Shoemaker, organized labor interests threatened Gov. Strickland that they would withhold nearly $400,000 in political contributions to the governor’s re-election campaign if Shoemaker remained OSFC executive director. Gov. Strickland then removed Shoemaker and appointed the union-friendly Murray upon the recommendation an Ohio union leader.

In 2006, LIUNA contributed over $326,000 to Gov. Strickland’s election campaign – making it his single largest political contributor. In 2010, LIUNA reportedly contributed over $500,000 to the Democratic Governors Association, which in turn spent over $1.75 million supporting Gov. Strickland’s re-election campaign.

In addition to Madison and Shelby schools, the complaint cites instances of corrupt activity by the parties in the Clay, New Boston, and Washington-Nile Local School Districts in Scioto County, and the Fremont City School District in Sandusky County.

Construction union contributions to help pass local school building levies are public records, and are available at your county board of elections.

February 24, 2011 – 1851 Victory: OSFC agrees to eliminate Prevailing Wage and Project Labor Agreements

The Ohio School Facilities Commission (OSFC) agreed to adopt Resolution 11-16, marking the conclusion of a lawsuit brought by the 1851 Center. Under the Resolution, the agency will no longer fund Ohio public school construction projects that implement Project Labor Agreements (PLAs) or Prevailing Wage (PW).  The move is expected to save Ohio taxpayers tens of millions of dollars, and level the playing field between union and non-union contractors.

“The adoption of this resolution is a monumental victory for the taxpayers of Ohio, who can expect to save tens of millions of dollars now that they won’t be subsidizing inflated union wages on multi-million-dollar school construction projects, and for non-union workers, who can now compete for these contracts on a level playing field,” said 1851 Center Director Maurice Thompson.  “Ohioans and non-union workers across the state should be very pleased with this outcome, and the Kasich Administration and Attorney General DeWine are commended for their cooperative approach in resolving this matter.”

The Resolution will:

  • Prohibit the use of Prevailing Wage on state-funded school projects;
  • Prohibit the use of PLAs on state-funded school projects;
  • Repeal all of OSFC Resolution 07-98, the Resolution implemented under the Strickland Administration that favored use of PW and PLAs;
  • Review existing contracts with PW and PLAs, including contracts in Madison, Shelby, Washington-Nile, Clay Local, and Euclid school districts, where 1851 has alleged rampant corruption;
  • Allow OSFC to rescind PLAs and PW terms on existing school construction projects that OSFC is funding;
  • Commit OSFC to the belief that “open contracting for publicly funded construction projects aids in lowering costs of such projects.”

The Resolution halts a practice outlined in the 1851 Center’s Complaint, whereby local construction unions would ensure the victory of a school district’s tax levy campaign to build new schools in exchange for the school district’s promise to implement union-friendly PW and PLAs.

“Higher quality schools can now be built for less, and tax levy elections in Ohio will now more accurately reflect taxpayers’ wishes, rather than construction union clout,” said Thompson.

As a result of the Resolution, the 1851 Center earlier today voluntarily dismissed its lawsuit, Oleksa v. Murray, which was pending in the Richland County Court of Common Pleas.

 

 

 

April 23, 2011 – Columbus Dispatch Editorial: Outline Limits

October 15, 2011 – Associated Press: Suit Against Ohio Governor Alleges Favoritism

October 15, 2011 – Gannett News Central Ohio: Lawsuit claims Strickland, Ohio School Facilities Commission engaged in corrupt activity

October 21, 2011 – Columbus Dispatch: Suit Alleges Strickland Favored Unions

WSPD AM 1370 Fred LeFebvre Show

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

WTVN AM 610 Bob Conners Morning Show 

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

WSPD AM 1370 Brian Wilson Show 

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

WKRC AM 550 Brian Thomas Show 

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

WLW AM 700 Scott Sloan Show 

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

 

 

 

October 14, 2010 1851 Center’s Complaint

February 24, 2011New OSFC Resolution

Victory: Gahanna Backs Down on High-Risk Loan Fund

October 18, 2010 – Taxpayer Victory: Gahanna Indefinitely Postpones Ill-Advised $375K High-Risk Venture Capital Loan Fund

Gahanna City Council indefinitely postponed a vote authorizing a city-backed $375,000 high-risk venture capital loan fund after the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law threatened legal action against the city.

Gahanna City Council had proposed an ordinance permitting the mayor to contract with the Economic and Community Development Institute (ECDI) for the creation of a venture capital loan fund. The fund would issue high-interest and interest-only loans to local businesses and individuals considered high-risk by conventional lenders.

During a Sept. 7 council meeting, 1851 Center Executive Director Maurice Thompson advised city officials against the constitutionally prohibited plan. Thompson informed council members that the Ohio Constitution (Section 6, Article VII) prohibits the city from “raising money for or loaning its credit to any private company, corporation or association.” Further, according to Ohio Supreme Court precedent, this constitutional provision is intended to protect taxpayers from the risks associated with the failure of a private project.

After Thompson’s presentation, council members decided to postpone a vote on the ordinance by two weeks while they review the consequences of the impending legal challenge. Council members’ decision to permanently drop the proposal is a significant victory for Gahanna residents, whose tax dollars will not be put a risk under this ill-conceived proposal.

The venture capital fund would have:

  • Used tax dollars to fund private enterprise;
  • Issued loans to individuals who lack conventional collateral or posed a high risk and may have been turned down by conventional lenders;
  • Issued loans at high interest rates of up to 12 percent; and
  • Allowed loans to be repaid on an interest-only basis.

In addition, the scuttled ordinance would have allowed the city to recover funds from defaulted loans by seizing an individual’s personal property, including “vehicles, personal items, antiques, collectibles jewelry, or livestock.”

 

 

 

 

October 13, 2010: ThisWeek Community News, Mayor Asks to Postpone Loan Fund

Drees Company v. Hamilton Township


 

Ohio Townships do not have the power to levy taxes.  That’s why they call them “fees.” This case argues that “fees” on new homeowners and developers are really taxes and are unconstitutional.

 

Timeline

February 14, 2011 – 1851 Center Files Amicus Brief at Ohio Supreme Court

On February 14, 2011, the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law filed an amicus brief with the Ohio Supreme Court, on its own behalf and on behalf of the Tax Foundation. The brief argues that Ohio townships, which do not have the power to levy taxes, cannot levy back-door taxes on new homeowners and developers merely by labeling those taxes as “impact fees.”

December 15, 2010 – The Ohio Supreme Court Accepts the Case on Appeal

February 1, 2010 –  1851 Center Files Amicus Brief at Appellate Court

The 1851 Center filed an amicus brief with the Twelfth District Court Appeals, arguing that Ohio townships, which do not have the power to levy taxes, cannot levy back-door taxes on new homeowners and developers merely by labeling those taxes as “impact fees.”

 

Media

March 3, 2011 – Listen to Maurice Thompson on the Tax Policy Podcast

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

.

 

Documents

February 14, 2011: 1851 Center’s Amicus Brief (Ohio Supreme Court)

February 1, 2010: 1851 Center’s Amicus Brief (Appellate Court)

Victory: Ohio Estate Tax Repealed

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The legislature has passed a state budget that includes the repeal of Ohio’s Estate Tax.  Special thanks to the team at http://www.endohioestatetax.com/ for their leadership in accomplishing a feat that no liberty group before them had accomplished:  the elimination of a statewide tax.  In drafting the initiative and representing the effort, the 1851 Center was simply the professional scaffolding around this inspiring all-volunteer effort.

Despite openly hostile opposition (see below) from city and township government bureaucrats, who used public funds to oppose the repeal, and behind-closed-doors dismissal from elected and even conservative policy organizations, Ohio’s worst-in-the-nation Estate Tax, kicking in at just $338,000, will no longer be tearing Ohio families apart, destroying family farms, and driving business from the state.

April 4, 2011 – Use of Public Funds to Oppose Estate Tax Repeal is Unconstitutional

The 1851 Center for Constitutional Law today notified the cities of Loveland, and Oakwood, Ohio that their use of public funds applied to the Council/Coalition to Protect Ohio’s Communities (CPOC) is unlawful and, if continued, will result in legal action on behalf of each city’s taxpayers.

CPOC, comprised of local governments seeking to maintain the Ohio Estate Tax, formed in response to the introduction of House Bill 3, legislation that will end the tax.

Ohio’s Estate Tax is rated the worst in the nation, and kicks in at the lowest threshold, taxing all assets above $338,000. Although it is opposed by many Ohioans, local governments formed CPOC to lobby and propagandize against estate tax repeal. Loveland and Oakwood used local taxpayer dollars to fund their participation in CPOC.

Using public funds to support CPOC’s efforts:

  • Abuses “Home Rule” authority, which only lends municipalities authority to exercise powers of local self-government
  • Abuses “Police Power” authority by supplying public funds to that are biased, unreasonable, and arbitrary
  • Violates competitive bidding requirements due to no-bid contracts; and
  • Violates the First Amendment rights of citizens by forcing taxpayers to speak in a manner with which they disagree

In letters sent to Loveland and Oakwood, 1851 Center Executive Director Maurice Thompson highlights the lack of regard for taxpayers in the cities’ actions:

“You have dedicated revenue derived from all of your residents towards taking a side in a hot-button political debate on which the two sides fervently disagree. Indeed, many of your own taxpayers, whose dollars you use to fund CPOC, have worked tirelessly to ensure the introduction of House Bill 3 into the Ohio General Assembly, and other Ohio cities and townships oppose your efforts.”

The 1851 Center requested that the cities of Loveland and Oakwood recover any public funds that have been directed to CPOC, abstain from transmitting further public funds to the group, and withdraw from the council entirely. Otherwise, the Center will bring legal action against each municipality on behalf of local taxpayers.

August, 2009 – Ballot Language Drafted

The 1851 Center drafted ballot language that was adopted by Citizens United to Eliminate Ohio’s Estate Tax for an Initiated Statute effort. If successful, the measure will eliminate the Ohio Estate Tax as of 2012. The Ohio Attorney General has approved the language and the group is now collecting the needed signatures to place the issue before the general assembly.

April 4, 20111851 Center’s Letter to City of Loveland

April 4, 20111851 Center’s Letter to City of Oakwood 

April 5, 2011 – Dayton Daily News: Estate Tax Lobbying Called Illegal; Cities Disagree

700 WLW: Doc Thompson

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

www.endohioestatetax.com

COAST v. City of Cincinnati

In May 2009, the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law filed, in Federal Court, a motion to restrain the City of Cincinnati and its agents from harassing citizens who are demanding that the City put its $200 million trolley project to a vote. The Motion argues the City consistently threatens petitioners who gather signatures for causes with which the City disagrees, and that the Court must immediately stop this interference.

Over the last month, the City of Cincinnati, through various police officer and other government agents, has escalated its interference with trolley project petitioners, ordering them to stop collecting signatures on Fountain Square, Findlay Market, and on public sidewalks, and in several cases, threatening to arrest petitioners for “circulating petitions without a license.” The Motion notes that no license or prior approval is needed to gather signatures on public property.

“The political class of Cincinnati clearly feels threatened by the idea that the citizens, and not they, would get to have the final word on whether to implement this abysmally expensive pork project.” Maurice Thompson, Director of the 1851 Center for Constitutional Law said.

The Center, who is partnering with the Coalition Opposed to Additional Spending and Taxes on this case, expects that the U.S. District Court will immediately grant a Temporary Restraining Order prohibiting the City and its agents from interfering with petitioner’s collection of signatures.

In Ohio and nationwide, Courts recognize the ballot initiative as the zenith of political speech, accorded the utmost protection under the First Amendment. Given our state Constitution’s acknowledgment that ‘all political power is inherent in the people,’ that the City would interfere with this clearly-recognized right in such a haphazard manner is dumbfounding.

The City’s interference and harassment coincides with COAST petitioners reaching the halfway point on their way to the the 6,150 valid signatures that need to be submitted by September 4 to place the issue on the ballot.

The city responded to the complaint by entering into a settlement agreement requiring them to allow petitioners to gather signatures.

May 2009: 1851 Center’s Complaint and Motion for Restraining Order

Ohio Grocer’s Association v. Wilkins

In May 2009, the 1851 Center filed an amicus brief in Ohio Grocers Association v. Wilkins. The brief argues that Ohio’s Commercial Activities Tax is an unconstitutional excise tax on food. It  is levied on Ohio grocers based on the amount of food they sell and grocers then pass the cost of the tax on to Ohioans when they purchase food.  The 1851 Center was recruited by the principal attorneys for the Ohio Grocers Association and worked in tandem with the Tax Foundation to explain the economics of the tax to the Supreme Court of Ohio.  Unfortunately the Supreme Court of Ohio recently overturned the Court of Appeals and ruled against the Ohio Grocers.

 

May 26, 2009: Ohio Grocers Amicus Brief