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RATH PACKING COMPANY v. PITTSBURGH. RATH PACKING COMPANY (05/02/61)

May 2, 1961

RATH PACKING COMPANY, APPELLANT,
v.
PITTSBURGH. RATH PACKING COMPANY, APPELLANT, V. PITTSBURGH SCHOOL DISTRICT.



Appeals, Nos. 86, 87, 88 and 89, March T., 1961, from orders of County Court of Allegheny County, Nos. A-416 and A-417 of 1955 and A-140 and A-141 of 1958, in cases of The Rath Packing Company v. City of Pittsburgh et al., and Same v. School District of Pittsburgh et al. Orders affirmed; reargument refused June 15, 1961.

COUNSEL

Carl E. Glock, Jr., with him Reed, Smith, Shaw & McClay, for appellant.

Edmund W. Ridall, Jr., Assistant Solicitor, with him Niles Anderson, Solicitor, for School District of Pittsburgh and Treasurer, appellees.

Regis C. Nairn, Assistant Solicitor, with him David Stahl, Solicitor, for City of Pittsburgh and Treasurer, appellees.

Before Jones, C.j., Bell, Musmanno, Jones, Cohen, Bok and Eagen, JJ.

Author: Bok

[ 404 Pa. Page 38]

OPINION BY MR. JUSTICE BOK.

There are four appeals here from the action of the County Court of Allegheny County. They involve the same mercantile license tax levied under the same Acts of Assembly as in Standard Brands v. Pittsburgh and Standard Brands v. Pittsburgh School District, 403 Pa. 590 (1961), 170 A.2d 568. One brace of appeals covers taxes on sales made during the years 1948 through 1954 and the other covers similar taxes during the year 1955.

From the assessments the taxpayer appealed to the County Court, which dismissed them and upheld the taxes. The taxpayer then appealed here.

The same legal principles and authorities are involved as in the Standard Brands case, and the tax is good if the evidence reveals more than mere solicitation of orders, as it clearly does. The taxes in question are limited to those laid on sales made in western Pennsylvania alone and the taxpayer admits the taxability of sales made and delivered in Pittsburgh, which were largely rejected orders where the goods had to be stored in the city or were otherwise housed there pending resale.

This mise-en-scene includes a main office at Waterloo, Iowa, and a district office in Pittsburgh. Every effort was obviously made to keep the latter a mere communication point and thus avoid the tax, but the exigencies of the business - which is meat packing and selling - couldn't be contained and unavoidably spilled

[ 404 Pa. Page 39]

    over. The company did its best to make every order subject to confirmation, per telephone or teletype, by the Waterloo office, but the ...


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