Occupational tax refunds brings Jeffco back to court

JEFFERSON COUNTY, AL (WBRC) - Jefferson County attorneys and attorneys representing taxpayers will head back to court on Friday. They remain tied up in legal arguments over whether taxpayers should receive a refund for the county occupational tax.

It was earlier this year when the occupational tax was declared illegal. Because of that ruling, the plaintiff's attorneys say the 48 million dollars that had been collected should be returned to the taxpayers.
Attorneys for the county argue that the new occupational tax passed by the Alabama Legislature in august contains a retroactive clause which allows the county to keep the money collected since January 1st. However, attorneys who filed the lawsuit filed a motion asking the judge sanction the county for refusing to refund workers money collected after the tax was declared illegal.
Commissioners say refunding that $48-million could harm county services. "We are going to look at all of our legal options so that the county doesn't suffer anymore than it should," says County Commissioner William Bell. "If at the bottom line we are required to pay whatever funds, we will do that."

The hearing begins at 1:30 Friday afternoon.