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Reason Foundation

Reason Foundation, The National Tax Limitation Committee and the Libertarian Law Council File Amicus Brief With Supreme Court on Municipal Taxpayer Standing

Highway J Citizens Group, U.A., Petitioner, v. Village of Richfield, Wisconsin, Respondent.

January 24, 2012

The confusion over municipal taxpayer standing has continued unmitigated since the Frothingham court first affirmed the doctrine in 1923. Since that time, federal courts, and state courts following federal law on standing (such as the Wisconsin Court of Appeals), have floundered amidst a sea of inconsistent and perplexing opinions. It would behoove this Court to eliminate the confusion, once and for all, by creating a streamlined approach to analyzing municipal taxpayer standing issues, just as it has done in the past for federal and state taxpayer standing. "[C]lear rules foster respect for the judiciary; they require judges to render consistent outcomes and ensure that judges draw on a body of law that represents the collective experience of the judiciary over time rather than upon their own political or ideological viewpoints." For these reasons, amici respectfully request that this Court grant the instant Petition for Certiorari and clarify the matter of municipal taxpayer standing for the benefit of the lower courts and municipal taxpayers throughout the United States.


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