The California Supreme Court on Wednesday overturned a $US1.2 billion verdict against IBM and awarded the firm a $AU2.7 billion damages award against the state of California.
The high court said the California Legislature had overstepped its bounds in enacting a law that is unconstitutional because it is a “burden on individuals and businesses to determine the extent of the damage inflicted by other parties on the property of others.”
The ruling was handed down by Chief Justice John Roberts and Justices John Paul Stevens, Ruth Bader Ginsburg and Elena Kagan.
“The Legislature’s actions were not the appropriate means for determining the damage,” Roberts wrote in the majority opinion.
The court said that IBM’s actions “contributed to a state of disrepair” and that “it is the Legislature’s burden to decide the extent to which damages will be awarded.”IBM, which is based in San Jose, California, filed suit in 2015 against the California Coastal Commission and the state after the state failed to remove ice from its waters.
In response, the company sought to have the state force it to repair a section of the coast known as the Ice Barrier, which separates San Diego County from the state.
In a motion filed with the court, the state argued that it was the duty of the state to protect its waters from ice that might accumulate during the ice age and said that “some people and businesses may find that it is not an acceptable use of their time and resources to be responsible for protecting this property.”
“These actions are intended to impose a cost on California’s residents and business, and not on others,” Roberts said.
“If it is possible for a state to impose costs on others, then the Legislature should have done so in this case, but this is not the case,” Roberts added.
“In this case the legislature has oversteached its bounds, and it has exceeded its bounds.”
A separate court ordered the state and IBM to pay damages to California’s farmers.
Gavin Newsom and other lawmakers have pushed the state to increase its $4 billion pot tax to $5 billion over two years.
If the federal government allows states to set their own tax rates, the state’s $4.2 billion pot-tax revenue would go up from $6.9 billion to $7.9 trillion, according to a report from Bloomberg.
“It’s time to do something,” Newsom said.
“We should have a federal solution, but that means we have to go to a state solution.
We have to take a chance on what we can do to create a new, clean, legal market.”
Newsom’s push for a federal marijuana tax is part of a larger push by California to secure a $10 billion budget surplus.
But it’s unclear if he has the support of the Legislature, which has already passed a budget surplus that will keep the state in surplus for two more years.
California’s budget was under pressure in recent weeks as lawmakers were debating whether to accept the state government’s $2.4 billion $4-billion pot tax offer, which would be the highest in the country.
But the state is already on pace to be in surplus next year, thanks to a $1.6 billion state-wide increase in unemployment benefits and other spending, including $2 billion in health-care spending.
“I’m very optimistic about our fiscal situation,” Newsome said in an interview after a recent state Budget Conference, where the governor’s budget blueprint was released.
“In addition to that, our revenue will be $7 billion, which is a significant increase from last year.
California lawmakers have been working to secure support for the tax proposal for more than a year, after it was floated in a March budget meeting. “
So, we have a lot of optimism.”
California lawmakers have been working to secure support for the tax proposal for more than a year, after it was floated in a March budget meeting.
But even if Newsom wins his bid to sign the state-based tax into law, the governor will still face challenges in his efforts to persuade voters in November to approve the $10-billion plan.
If approved, the measure would give states the authority to set a $20-per-ounce tax rate on pot sales.
That would require that sales be taxed at rates above those on alcohol, tobacco and other legal products, as well as at the same tax rate as cigarettes and alcohol.
The measure also would require localities to establish a minimum tax rate for marijuana and would allow for the taxation of recreational marijuana sales in the state, if they so choose.
“This is going to be an enormous challenge,” said Michael Katz, a senior fellow at the Brookings Institution who served as an adviser to Newsom in his bid for re-election last year, in an email.
“The idea that the federal Government is going be willing to make this happen on a state level and give us a chance to do this in a way that is not going to impact people in California is not really something that people are willing to accept.”
Katz also said it would be “highly unlikely” that a single-payer system would work, because the federal system would have a “significant” cost to the federal Treasury, and because the government would likely take a different approach to taxation than California does.
A number of states have passed legislation to legalize medical marijuana.
New York Gov.
Andrew Cuomo and other Democratic lawmakers have called for a $3-per -ounce tax on recreational pot, and Colorado Gov.
John Hickenlooper has said he wants to raise the statewide tax to the national average of $4 per ounce.
But Newsom has said that if the state has to raise taxes, he will work with legislators to find a solution that works.
“If it doesn’t work out, we’ll come up with another way to do it,” Newsomb said.