So Liberal Party dominated State governments (with an assist from mining companies) are planning to challenge to the legality of the Gillard government’s carbon and mining taxes in the High Court.
As Chris Bowen (Immigration Minister) recently found out, there the are often a few surprises handed out with court rulings.
In the Social Sciences, we have what is known as the Law of Unintended consequences, a perverse effect contrary to what was originally intended.
State politicians and at least one mining billionaire have suggested that the requirement of Section 114 of the constitution is that the Commonwealth not “impose any tax on property of any kind belonging to a state”
The assumption here is that the mineral resources are state government property and these resources are indeed owned by the crown. There is only one Australian crown and that is vested in the Commonwealth of Australia (Federal Government). So it is possible that there is no such thing as State government ownership of these minerals. The High Court could determine that these mineral resources are the property of ALL Australians (common wealth) and this may mean State governments have no right to claim royalty payments.
So if State Government’s insist on their “pound of flesh” they may end up with nothing.
Gotta love the Law of Unintended consequences, so c’mmon Liberal State Government’s hava go.