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Pennsylvania judge sets conference date in tax uniformity case
HARRISBURG, Pa. (8/15/08)--Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Judge Dante Pelligrini has scheduled a status conference for Sept. 9 with legal counsel for all parties in a uniformity of taxation case. The conference's purpose is to discuss moving the case forward, said the Pennsylvania Credit Union Association (PCUA). The case stems from a lawsuit by bankers involving the applications for community charters by Trumark Financial CU, based in Trevose, and Freedom CU, based in Warminster. At issue is whether credit unions and banks are sufficiently distinguishable to merit different tax treatment consistent with the Pennsylvania Constitution. A provision in the state constitution states that like entities should be taxed in a like manner, said Rick Wargo, general counsel at PCUA. That tax uniformity issue is different from the tax exemption issue, which the Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruled on in June, he told News Now. In that ruling the Supreme Court unanimously upheld PCUA's arguments and said banks are not entitled to appeal the lower court's dismissal of several claims. The case had stalled for about two years while the appeals went to the Supreme Court to address procedural and community chartering matters, said PCUA. A status conference is an informal meeting where attorneys for the parties in the case discuss with the judge the procedural posture of the case and what the parties anticipate they will need in terms of discovery. PCUA said the court likely will set a schedule to proceed forward at the conference.


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