Ohio Supreme Court Says State Can’t Continue to Collect CAT on Fuel

Dec 10, 2012

The Ohio Supreme Court has ruled the state cannot continue to a certain kind of tax money for non highway projects.

The state is spending about 140 million dollars each year that it gets from the commercial activities tax on fuel purchases for things that don’t involve highway maintenance and construction.  A couple of county engineers and some businesses thought that was a violation of the state constitution because, under it, tax money collected on fuel is to go for highway purposes. 

Now, in a 6 to 1 decision, the Ohio Supreme Court agrees that the commercial activities tax (CAT) collected on fuel cannot be used for purposes that are not highway related.  Since the decision does not apply to taxes that were collected in the past, the state will not have to repay millions of dollars but it is prevented from collecting that money in the future.  There’s no word on what the state might do to make up for the tax money on fuel taxes.