Briefing complete in local tax challenge

February 04, 2016 | By DAMIEN SCHIFF

With the filing of our reply brief on appeal, briefing has been completed in Building Industry Association – Bay Area v. City of San Ramon.  The appeal concerns the legality of a tax levied by the City of San Ramon on new development.  We contend that the tax violates a number of constitutional and statutory protections … ...


Special taxes and voter approval

August 07, 2014 | By DAMIEN SCHIFF

This week, the California Court of Appeal, in City of San Diego v. Shapiro, overturned a special tax approved by the City of San Diego to help finance a potential expansion of the San Diego Convention Center.  The tax was approved not by the City’s electorate but rather by the owner and lessees of land … ...


Finding one's way out of a paper bag . . . tax

April 05, 2013 | By TONY FRANCOIS

Usually in California, when the state or a local government passes a law that requires citizens to pay a charge for something, a debate ensues about whether the charge is a tax or a fee.  Under the California Constitution, as amended by Proposition 26 in 2010, new local taxes must be passed by the voters … ...


Can government force you to give up fundamental rights for a building permit?


Author: Paul J. Beard II We all know that government entities across the country are facing major budget deficits. We also know that governments often prefer to avoid the sort of belt-tightening that so many American families have been forced to do in recent years, and instead prefer to find clever ways of financing their … ...