expressly amends the first sentence of Section 442(f) relating to the definition of 'total assets' and provides that, 'For the purposes of this section, the taxpayer's total assets for any day shall be * * *'. Section 510 makes no express reference to Section 446, nor does Section 442 or any other section make the definition of 'total assets' applicable to Section 446. Similarly, the method of arriving at an average base period net income under Section 446, which is then used to compute the excess profits tax credit, is clear and unambiguous. Under these circumstances, the issue is whether the provisions of Section 446 can be affected by the comments of the Senate Committee on Finance or by the caption of Section 510, in the absence of reference to Section 446 in the enacting provisions of Section 510 of the Revenue Act of 1951.
This Court is of the opinion that in the absence of any reference to Section 446 in Section 510, and in view of the plain meaning of the provisions of Sections 510 and 446, it was not the intent of Congress to amend Section 446 to provide a definition of total assets or to limit the generally accepted meaning of the term as used therein, as defendant contends.
The following statements of principle are appropriate:
1. 'Factors of this type have led to the wise rule that the title of a statute and the heading of a section cannot limit the plain meaning of the text. United States v. Fisher, 2 Cranch, 358, 386 (2 L. Ed. 304); Cornell v. Coyne, 192 U.S. 418, 430 (24 S. Ct. 383, 48 L. Ed. 504); Strathearn S.S. Co. v. Dillon, 252 U.S. 348, 354 (40 S. Ct. 350, 64 L. Ed. 607). For interpretative purposes, they are of use only when they shed light on some ambiguous word or phrase. They are but tools available for the resolution of a doubt. But they cannot undo or limit that which the text makes plain.' Brotherhood of Railroad Trainmen v. Baltimore & O.R.Co., 1947, 331 U.S. 519, 528, 67 S. Ct. 1387, 1392, 91 L. Ed. 1646, cited with approval in United States v. Minker, 1956, 350 U.S. 179, 185, 76 S. Ct. 281, 100 L. Ed. 185.
2. 'The short answer is that there is no need to refer to the legislative history where the statutory language is clear. 'The plain words and meaning of a statute cannot be overcome by a legislative history which, through strained processes of deduction from events of wholly ambiguous significance, may furnish dubious bases for inference in every direction.' Gemsco (Inc.) v. Walling, 324 U.S. 244, 260 (65 S. Ct. 605, 89 L. Ed. 921) (1945). This canon of construction has received consistent adherence in our decisions.' Ex parte Collett, 1949, 337 U.S. 55, 61, 69 S. Ct. 944, 947, 959, 93 L. Ed. 1207.
Treasury Regulation 130, Section 40.446-3(c) is likewise of no avail to the defendant. It provides that the definition of 'total assets' for the purpose of Section 446 is the same as that set forth in Section 442(f). In view of the plain meaning of Section 446, which section is completely independent of Section 442, and of the plain meaning of Section 442, which omits any reference to Section 446, the Regulation appears to add a legislative provision which could only be enacted by Congress. Helvering v. Credit Alliance Corp., 1942, 316 U.S. 107, 62 S. Ct. 989, 86 L. Ed. 1307.
The method of arriving at the excess profits tax credit employed by plaintiff in this case is correct.
In accordance with their stipulation that the amount of tax to be refunded shall be subject to recomputation by the Internal Revenue Service should the plaintiff prevail in this action, the parties will submit an order for judgment for plaintiff consistent with this opinion.
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