Pacific American Fisheries v. Alaska,
269 U.S. 269 (1925)

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U.S. Supreme Court

Pacific American Fisheries v. Alaska, 269 U.S. 269 (1925)

Pacific American Fisheries v. Alaska

No. 246

Argued November 24, 1925

Decided December 7, 1925

269 U.S. 269


1. A graduated surtax on salmon canneries of five cents per case of the product packed on all cases in excess of 10,000 and not more than 25,000; ten cents per case on all from 25,000 to 40,000; fifteen cents per case on all from 40,000 to 50,000, and twenty-five cents per case on all in excess of 50,000, is within the taxing power conferred on the Alaska Legislature by the Organic Act of August 24, 1912. P. 269 U. S. 276.

2. This tax is not inconsistent with the provision of the Organic Act that the authority therein granted to the legislature to alter; modify and repeal laws in force in Alaska shall not extend to the game, fish, and fur seal laws, which is coupled with the proviso that the restriction shall not operate to prevent the legislature from imposing other and additional taxes and licenses. P. 269 U. S. 277.

3. Semble that the purpose of this restriction was to prevent the Territory from doing away with fish protection. Id.

4. In exercising its taxing power on canneries, the legislature may consider collateral advantages of fish protection. Id.

5. The tax, by discriminating against large canneries in favor of small ones, does not contravene the Fifth Amendment, since classification of taxes by the amount of the corpus taxed is valid when, as here, the inequalities are based on intelligible grounds of policy. P. 269 U. S. 278.

2 F.2d 9 affirmed.

Certiorari to a judgment of the circuit court of appeals affirming a judgment of the United States District Court in Alaska in favor of the Territory, in an action to collect license taxes.

Page 269 U. S. 275

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