takes on the state of Texas

I read this article in Shelf Awareness and thought I would share.

Last fall, Texas assessed Amazon $269 million in uncollected sales tax, interest and penalties for the four years running from December 2005 to December 2009 (Shelf Awareness, October 25, 2010). Last week, Amazon filed a lawsuit in Travis County District Court that argues "the documents must be made public under the Texas Public Information Act and seeks a court order forcing their release. The suit also seeks recovery of attorneys' fees and other legal costs," the Austin American-Statesman reported.

Amazon's lawsuit contends it sent letters in September and October to the comptroller's office requesting "information related to the audit and the assessment" and an explanation of the basis for the assessment, but "auditors were not forthcoming with an explanation."

The comptroller's office refused to provide that information, arguing that it was protected by attorney-client privilege because "the entire file relating to the audit was 'prepared by an attorney,' and thus... protected from disclosure," according to the lawsuit. On December 16, an opinion issued by the Texas attorney general's office agreed with the comptroller's office, the American-Statesman wrote.


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