THE SUPREME COURT OF THE
FEDERATED STATES OF MICRONESIA
Cite as Chuuk Chamber of Commerce v. Weno ,
6 FSM Intrm. 480 (Chuuk 1994)
CHUUK CHAMBER OF COMMERCE et al.,
CIVIL ACTION NO. 1992-1038
Richard H. Benson
Decided: August 25, 1994
For the Plaintiffs: Fredrick L. Ramp, Esq.
P.O. Box 1480
Kolonia, Pohnpei FM 96941
For the Defendant: Maketo Robert, Esq.
P.O. Box 243
Weno, Chuuk FM 96942
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Federalism ) Abstention and Certification
Where the validity of a municipal tax ordinance is questioned under the state constitution and right of the taxpayer to a refund it is appropriate for the FSM Supreme Court to certify the question to the appellate division of the state court. Chuuk Chamber of Commerce v. Weno, 6 FSM Intrm. 480, 481 (Chk. 1994).
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RICHARD H. BENSON, Associate Justice:
Today, I signed a Request that Certified Questions of Law be decided by the Appellate Division of the Chuuk State Supreme Court.
At issue is the validity of three Weno Municipal Ordinances which now impose or earlier imposed a tax on the plaintiffs. The plaintiffs also pray for a refund of taxes paid pursuant to the allegedly invalid ordinances since October 1, 1989 (the date the Chuuk State Constitution became effective).
The plaintiffs allege that the Municipal Ordinances violate the Chuuk State Constitution. The plaintiffs contend that the ordinances are invalid since there has been no delegation of the taxing power by the state to the municipality, and that they are entitled to a refund of all taxes paid.
Because the case raises Chuuk State Constitutional questions as to the validity of the ordinances and the right to a refund I invited and received the views of counsel on the possibility of certifying those issues to the Appellate Division of the Chuuk State Supreme Court.
After carefully considering those views, I have concluded that certification is appropriate. My reasons for doing so are contained in the memorandum filed August 25, 1994 in Stinnett v. Weno, 6 FSM Intrm. 478 (Chk. 1994).
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