U.S. Supreme Court declines to review Oregon weight-mile tax regime

The trucking industry exhausted its final judicial appeal Monday, June 26, when the U.S. Supreme Court declined to review a December 2005 decision by the Oregon Supreme Court that upheld Oregon’s weight-mile tax system. The American Trucking Associations was joined by several trucking companies in challenging the weight-mile tax system’s provision for some carriers to pay a flat fee by arguing that it violated the dormant Commerce Clause of the U.S. Constitution.

Following litigation that dates back to July 2000, the state Supreme Court ruled in December that there is no evidence that the ability of certain motor carriers hauling wood or agricultural products to pay weight-mile taxes on the basis of a flat fee rather than by miles traveled puts interstate carriers at a disadvantage when compared with intrastate carriers.

The U.S. Supreme Court agrees to hear only a tiny fraction of the thousands of appeals plaintiffs bring to it each year.

A copy of the December 2005 Oregon Supreme Court decision is available at the state’s Judicial Department website.