ATLANTA -- The Alabama Supreme Court recently ruled that the state can maintain its current fee structure for toxic waste disposal, preempting a potential $40 million annual drain on state revenues.

The July 11 ruling by the state high court reverses a circuit court judge's February ruling that Alabama must set the same rates for fees charged to bury waste both brought into and originating within the state. Judge Joseph D. Phelps of the Circuit Court of Montgomery County held that the $72-per-ton difference in the fees was invalid under the commerce clause of the U.S. Constitution.

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