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U.S. High Court Won't Consider Osage Tribe's Case (Jun 27, 2011)

PAWHUSKA, Okla. (AP) — The U.S. Supreme Court has declined to consider an Oklahoma tribe's appeal regarding a lawsuit over whether tribal citizens who live and work in Osage County are exempt from state income taxes.

The nation's high court on Monday denied the Osage Nation's petition for a writ of certiorari, leaving intact a 2009 U.S. District Court ruling.

In a 2001 lawsuit against the Oklahoma Tax Commission, the tribe claimed Congress never affirmatively disestablished its reservation in northeastern Oklahoma and that federal law exempts tribal members who live and work there from paying state income taxes.

Principal Chief John Red Eagle said he's disappointed with the decision, but added no tribal programs, services or business enterprises will be affected.

Tax Commission spokeswoman Paula Ross says the decision pretty much closes the case.

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