Full Court Minute Books

Case S202/2021

Hornsby Shire Council v. Commonwealth of Australia & Anor

Case No.

S202/2021

Case Information

Catchwords

Constitutional law – Taxation – Section 55 of Constitution – Laws imposing taxation only to deal with imposition of taxation – Where Commonwealth makes grants of financial assistance for local government purposes to States under s 9 of Local Government (Financial Assistance) Act 1995 (Cth) – Where grants made on conditions specified in s 15 of Local Government (Financial Assistance) Act – Where conditions in s 15 amended by items 16, 17 and 18 of Sch 1 to Local Government (Financial Assistance) Amendment Act 2000 (Cth) to include conditions that, if local government failed to pay Commonwealth GST payments, then: (1) State required to withhold amount allocated to local government and pay amount to Commonwealth (s 15(aa)); and, if Commonwealth Minister tells State Treasurer that Commonwealth Minister satisfied State failed to withhold and pay amount, State to repay Commonwealth amount determined by Commonwealth Minister (s 15(c)) – Whether items 16, 17 or 18 of Sch 1 to Local Government (Financial Assistance) Amendment Act contrary to s 55 of Constitution.

Constitutional law – Taxation – Sections 114 of Constitution – Prohibition on Commonwealth taxes imposed on property of State – Where Commonwealth provides grants of financial assistance to States under Federal Finance Relations Act 2009 (Cth), including revenue assistance by way of goods and services tax ("GST") – Where Commonwealth provides grants of financial assistance for local government purposes to States under Local Government (Financial Assistance) Act – Where Intergovernmental Agreement Implementation (GST) Act 2000 (NSW) introduced to give effect to agreement between Commonwealth and States regarding GST whereby Commonwealth paid States GST revenue and States assumed responsibility for payment of financial assistance to local governments – Where plaintiff purchased vehicle, with purchase amount including GST, and subsequently sold vehicle through auction with GST deducted – Where plaintiff, under protest, reported amount of notional GST relating to sale of vehicle in Business Activity Statement, being form for GST returns lodged with Australian Taxation Officer – Whether provisions of Local Government (Financial Assistance) Act, Federal Financial Relations Act and of Intergovernmental Agreement Implementation (GST) Act impose tax on property belonging to plaintiff, contrary to s 114 of Constitution – Proper approach to relief.

Documents

13/12/2021 Writ of Summons

14/06/2022 Hearing (Single Justice, Canberra by video connection)

21/06/2022 Hearing (Single Justice, Canberra by video connection)

05/09/2022 Hearing (Single Justice, Canberra by video connection)

06/09/2022 Special case stated

09/09/2022 Order referring matter to the Full Court

31/10/2022 Written submissions (Plaintiff)

28/11/2022 Written submissions (Defendants)

23/12/2022 Reply

*The due dates shown for documents on this page are indicative only.