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COUNTRY PARADISE PARK v. TOWNSHIP SUGARCREEK (03/02/82)

decided: March 2, 1982.

COUNTRY PARADISE PARK, INC., APPELLANT
v.
TOWNSHIP OF SUGARCREEK, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Armstrong County in case of Township of Sugarcreek v. Country Paradise Park, Inc., No. 1980-0737 -- Civil.

COUNSEL

Blair F. Green, Green and Bish, for appellant.

George R. Kepple, for appellee.

President Judge Crumlish and Judges Blatt and Craig, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by President Judge Crumlish, Jr. Judge Palladino did not participate in the decision in this case.

Author: Crumlish

[ 65 Pa. Commw. Page 93]

Country Paradise Park, Inc., appeals an Armstrong County Common Pleas Court decision holding that

[ 65 Pa. Commw. Page 94]

Sugarcreek's Township amusement tax*fn1 was constitutional. We affirm.

Paradise Park's facilities are used for auctions, camping and country-western musical shows. Paradise Park paid amusement tax on the musical shows in 1976, 1977 and 1978. When the taxing ordinance was amended in 1979 to raise the tax to 5% of the admission price, Paradise Park brought this suit.*fn2

Paradise Park's attack on this ordinance is based on three grounds: (1) Section 2 of the ordinance is unconstitutionally vague; (2) in the alternative, if Section 2 is not vague, Paradise Park is excluded by its definition; and (3) it is the only enterprise taxed under this ordinance in violation of the uniformity clause of the Pennsylvania Constitution.*fn3

Section 2 of Sugarcreek's amusement tax ordinance reads:

Any facility . . . which operates primarily as an amusement facility shall be subject to the payment of an amusement tax to and for the use of this township.

"[A] party challenging the constitutionality of a statute has a heavy burden to rebut the presumption of constitutionality and . . . all doubts will be resolved in favor of sustaining the legislation." Daly v. Pennsylvania State Horse Racing ...


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