In a swift move, the California Supreme Court denied review in Morning Star Packing Co. v. California Air Resources Board yesterday. I saw “swift” because we only filed our reply in support of the petition for review on Monday. The justices must have been furiously reading all three replies filed in the case on Monday, so that they would be well prepared to vote on the case by Wednesday.
This is a very unfortunate decision, because it leaves in place a multi-billion dollar energy charge that gets paid on all gasoline, diesel, natural gas, propane, and coal used to power California’s electrical grid, heat homes, and fuel transportation and industry. The lower courts held (wrongly, we think) that this energy charge is not a tax under Proposition 13, and now the state Supreme Court has let that ruling stand, and California taxpayers will be the worse off for it.