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Lawsuit aims to stop a proposed B&O tax

Updated: Tuesday, July 1 2014, 10:32 AM EDT
WEIRTON, W.Va. --  Details of a lawsuit  have surfaced against the city of Weirton that aims to stop a proposed B&O tax.
The lawsuit was filed by a prominent Ohio Valley attorney on behalf of three businesses in Weirton. And it asks for Ohio County Judge David Sims, who heard arguments Thursday, to grant an injunction that would postpone any action on the city's proposed B&O tax.
After a closer look, though, you realize that the suit isn't just about an expected vote on Tuesday night, one Sims can stop.
The suit claims that the ordinance is unconstitutional, citing the way the city plans to tax businesses, and the fact that Ward 1 wasn't represented during the first reading. And it also cites a number of alleged violations committed by council to get to this point.
Weirton Mayor George Kondik says, "Council still plans to proceed with the vote on Tuesday night. If a decision is made by Judge David J. Sims that would affect that, council will adjust accordingly."
And JJ Bernabei, who owns the Tri-State Medical group says, "A tax on gross receipts will affect the ability of businesses to operate. It will also affect employees and residents in a negative way."
NEWS9 also reached out to the attorney representing the businesses in this case, Kevin Pearl, and Judge Sims, but has yet to hear back.
The Weirton Area Chamber of Commerce, which has been outspoken on the issue, says its stance hasn't changed. It is still against the tax, and will now, like everyone else, await the court's decision.

Lawsuit aims to stop a proposed B&O tax

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