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October 5, 2010 4:00 PM, EDT

ATA Files Supreme Court Brief in Alabama Railroads Case

American Trucking Associations has filed an amicus brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in a case that pits the railroads against the State of Alabama’s fuel tax system.

CSX Transportation is arguing in a case the high court is scheduled to hear Nov. 10 that Alabama discriminates against railroads because they must pay state sales tax on diesel purchases, while truckers are exempt.

Truckers, however, pay a 17-cent per gallon diesel tax that railroads do not pay.

The railroad contends that federal law governing railroads and interstate commerce overrides state law and specifically prevents states from levying discriminatory taxes.

Alabama, and ATA in its amicus, are arguing that an exemption does not constitute discrimination.