DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The city of Des Moines must refund millions of dollars to utility customers after the U.S. Supreme Court rejected an appeal request in a lawsuit involving the collection of fees on gas and electricity utility bills.
The court's decision announced Monday upheld the Iowa Supreme Court, which in turn upheld lower court decisions that declared the collection of between $30 million and $40 million an illegal tax. Iowa courts have ordered the city to repay the money.
The city appealed to the U.S. Supreme Court in July.
The decision means the case returns to Polk County District Court, where an exact refund will be determined for 100,000 Des Moines utility customers.
The case is about permissible use of franchise fees intended to maintain city right of ways used by utilities.