Laws, Regulations and Annotations


Business Taxes Law Guide – Revision 2023

Transactions and Use Tax Court Decisions

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Rider v. County of San Diego … (1991)

The Imposition of Sales Tax by the San Diego county Regional Justice Facility Financing Agency After Approval of the Tax by a Simple Majority of the Voters Violated Proposition 13

Plaintiff county taxpayers filed a suit challenging the validity of a tax imposed on sales occurring in the county because the tax violated the supermajority vote requirements of California Constitution article XIII A, §4. The California Supreme Court affirmed judgment in favor of the taxpayers, holding that a "special district" within the meaning of Section 4 would include any local taxing agency created to raise funds for city or county purposes to replace revenues lost by reason of the restrictions of Proposition 13. The Court further held that a "special tax" is one levied to fund a specific governmental project or program, such as the construction and financing of a county's justice facilities. The Court recognized under the foregoing principle, every tax levied by a "special purpose" district or agency would be deemed a "special tax," but found that this interpretation seemed most consistent with the probable intent of the framers of Proposition 13. Rider v. County of San Diego (1991) 1 Cal.4th 1.