CONNECTICUT SLAPPED A RETROACTIVE TAX on scrap tires that a power project uses as fuel
Oxford Tire Supply collects millions of scrap tires each year and delivers 95% of them to a power plant owned by Exeter Energy. CMS Energy owns 100% of Oxford and 50% of the Exeter project. During the period 1989 to 1994, Oxford did not collect any sales taxes from the garages that paid it to haul away their scrap tires on grounds that its service involved “removal of hazardous waste,” which is exempted from sales taxes. A Connecticut court agreed with the company. However, while the state tax department was appealing the case, it persuaded the Connecticut legislature to amend the tax laws retroactively to exclude scrap tires from the definition of hazardous waste. Oxford then lost the case on appeal. The appeals court announced its decision in late July.