PETITION FOR REDRESS OF GRIEVANCES
THE FIRST AMENDMENT TO THE UNITED STATES CONSTITUTION PROVIDES
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free
exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the
people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Article 2, Section 5 of the Arizona Constitution provides that:
The right of petition, and of the people peaceably to assemble for the common good, shall never
We the undersigned, all Citizens of the several States/ the United States do claim and assert our
Right to petition for redress of grievances which is expressed within and guaranteed by the
National Constitution (Amendment 1, Bill of Rights) and the Arizona Constitution. (Article 2,
Section 5) All officers and employees of government are bound by and through their respective
Loyalty Oaths A.R.S. 38-231 (E) to bear true faith and allegiance to both the National
Constitution and the Arizona Constitution and the laws made in pursuance thereof. For the Right
of petition as is expressed within the National and State Constitutions to possess the attendant
weight to affect peaceful change where change must and should be made, then government has a
duty as the custodians of the Rights of the People to respond to petitions in a forthright and
Our grievance is specific to A.R.S. 42-12003 which states in pertinent part: Class three
property; definition A. For purposes of taxation, class three is established consisting of real and
personal property and improvements to the property that are used as the owner’s primary
If A.R.S. 42-12003, is to withstand a constitutional challenge the word owner’s as utilized within
said statute cannot apply to a Citizen of the several States/United States. The word owner’s can
only apply to non-citizens. To be clear, our grievance is not that A.R.S. 42-12003 is written in a
manner that is not in compliance with the National Constitution or the Arizona Constitution, but
that the County of Navajo has expanded the interpretation of the word “owner’s” as utilized
within said statute to include both Citizens of the several States/United States and non-citizens
Article VI, Section 2, of the Constitution of the National Constitution states: “This Constitution,
and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; …shall be the
Supreme Law of the Land; and Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the
Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding.”
The Arizona Constitution at Article 2, Section 3 affirms Article VI, Section 2 of the
National Constitution: “The Constitution of the United States is the supreme law of the land.”
The Supreme Court in the decision of Ward v. Maryland, 79 U.S. 418 (1870) expressed the
limits and boundaries of the several States to lay and collect taxes. The Ward decision states in
“Implied prohibitions restricting the power of the states to lay and collect taxes also exist which
are as effectual to that end as those which are express.”
“Outside of the prohibitions, express and implied, contained in the federal Constitution, the
power of the states to tax for the support of their own governments is coextensive with the
subjects within their unrestricted sovereign power…”
“Coextensive” is a key word in this sentence. Coextensive: “having the same limits or
Pursuant to the Ward decision the limits and boundaries that bind the federal government with
respect to taxation also binds the governments of the several States. Those limits and boundaries
are expressed within the National Constitution within Article I.
The Ward decision goes on to state: “Comprehensive as the power of the states is to lay and
collect taxes and excises, it is nevertheless clear, in the judgment of the Court, that the power
cannot be exercised to any extent in a manner forbidden by the Constitution;…”
If, pursuant to the Ward decision, the several States cannot lay and collect taxes, “to any extent
in a manner forbidden by the Constitution,” it must follow then that the States may only lay and
collect taxes in a manner that is allowed by the Constitution. Therefore, while the State’s power
to lay and collect taxes is plenary, the State, in the laying and collecting of said taxes, is bound
by the constraints expressed within the National Constitution at Article I.
Those constraints are as follows: the National Constitution at Article I, Section 2, Clause 3 states
that direct taxes must be apportioned.
The National Constitution at Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 states that imposts, duties and excises
(indirect taxes) must be uniform.
Therefore, the several States must apportion direct taxes and indirect taxes must be uniform.
The Arizona Constitution at Article 9, Section 1 states: “The power of taxation shall never be
surrendered, suspended or contracted away. Except as provided by section 18 of this article, all
taxes shall be uniform upon the same class of property within the territorial limits of the
authority levying the tax…”
The National Constitution at Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 states that uniformity is a
characteristic of an indirect tax; and, therefore, the Arizona property tax A.R.S. 42-12003 must
be an indirect tax.
The National Constitution at Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 notes but three types of indirect taxes:
imposts, duties or excise taxes.
Therefore as the National Constitution which the Arizona Constitution at Article 2, Section 3
states is “the supreme law of the land,” recognizes but three types of indirect taxes the Arizona
property tax A.R.S. 42-12003 must be either an impost a duty or an excise tax.
The Arizona property tax A.R.S. 42-12003 cannot be an impost or a duty as imposts and duties
are tariffs on goods entering or leaving a country. This is affirmed by the National Constitution
at Article I, Section 10, Clause 2 and reaffirmed by any edition of Black’s Law Dictionary or
Bouvier’s Law Dictionary.
Therefore, as the National Constitution Article I, Section 8, Clause 1 recognizes but three types
of indirect taxes, and by eliminating the possibility that the Arizona property tax A.R.S. 42-
12003 is either an impost or a duty the Arizona property tax A.R.S. 42-12003 must be an excise
An excise tax is defined as follows: “A tax imposed on the performance of an act, the engaging
in an occupation, or the enjoyment of a privilege.” (Black’s Law Dictionary, 6th Edition 1991)
An excise tax is also defined as: “A tax levied on the manufacture, sale, or consumption of a
commodity, 2. “any of various taxes on privileges often assessed in the form of a license or other
Both State and Federal Courts have identified an excise tax as a tax on a privilege. See: Flint v.
Stone Tracy Co. 220 U.S. 107 (1911); Foster & C. Co. v. Graham, 154 Tenn. 412, 285 S.W.
570, 47 ALR 971; American Airways v. Wallace, 57 F.2d 877,880; People ex rel Atty Gen v.
Naglee, 1 Cal 232; Bank of Commerce & T. Co. v. Senter, 149 Tenn 441 SW 144; Shannon v.
Streckus Steamers, 279 Ky. 649, 131 S.W. 2d 833, 838.
Clearly the Arizona property tax A.R.S. 42-12003 is not a tax imposed upon, “the performance of
an act” or “the engaging in an occupation.” Further, it is not a tax on the, “manufacture, sale or
consumption of a commodity.”
Therefore, by process of elimination, the Arizona property tax must be a tax on some privilege
associated with real property ownership, and not a tax on the real property itself.
Pursuant to United States Supreme Court decisions a tax on real property must be imposed as a
direct tax subject to apportionment. See: Veazie Bank v. Fenno, 75 U.S. 8 Wall. 533 533
(1869); Hylton v. U.S., 3 US 171 (1796); Knowlton v. Moore,178 US 41 (1900); Pollock v.
Farmer’s Loan & Trust Co. 158 U.S. 601 (rehearing) (1895); Eisner v. Macomber 252 U.S.
189, 205 (1920) et al.
To review: the Arizona Constitution at Article 9 states that all taxes on property must be uniform.
Pursuant to the National Constitution at Article I uniformity is a characteristic of an indirect tax.
The Arizona Constitution at Article 9 makes no allowance for apportionment of taxes on real
property. However, the United States Supreme Court requires that any and all taxation of real
property must be done by and through apportionment. Therefore, the Arizona property tax
A.R.S. 42-12003 cannot be a tax on the real property itself, but it must be an excise tax on a
privilege associated with property ownership. However, and here is the crux of our grievance, the
United States Supreme Court and lower federal courts have decided that it is a Right and not a
privilege for Citizens of the several States/ United States to acquire, own, enjoy, and defend
property at law.
Corfield v. Coryell, 6 Fed. Cas. 546, no. 3,230 C.C.E.D.Pa. (1823) “The next question
is, whether this act infringes that section of the constitution which declares that, ‘the
citizens of each are entitled to all the privileges and immunities of the citizens in the
several states?’ (Article IV, Section 2 National Constitution) We feel no hesitation in
confining these expressions to those privileges and immunities which are in their nature
fundamental; which belong of right to the citizens of all free governments, and which
have at all times been enjoyed by the citizens of the several states which compose this
Union from the time of their becoming free, independent and sovereign. What these
fundamental principles are it would be more tedious than difficult to enumerate. They
may, however, be all comprehended under the following general heads: Protection by the
government, the enjoyment of life and liberty with the right to acquire and possess
property of every kind, and to pursue and obtain happiness and safety, subject,
nevertheless, to such restraints as the government may prescribe for the general good of
the whole.” (See also.) Paul v. Virginia, 75 U.S. 168 (1869); Ward v. Maryland, 79 U.S. 418
(1870); Maxwell v. Dow, 176 U.S. 581 (1900).
All of the cases noted above trace the Right of a Citizen of the several States/United States to
acquire, own, enjoy and to defend property at law to the National Constitution at Article IV,
Section 2. This clause is commonly known as the privileges and immunities clause.
In addition the United States Supreme Court has decided that the several States are forbidden
from converting a Right expressed within and guaranteed by the National Constitution into a
taxable privilege. Murdock v. Penn. 319 US 105 (1943): “A state may not impose a charge for
the enjoyment of a right granted by the Federal Constitution …Since the privilege in question is
guaranteed by the Federal Constitution and exists independently of the states authority, the
inquiry as to whether the state has given something for which it cannot ask a return, is irrelevant.
No state may convert any secured liberty into a privilege and issue a license and a fee for it….A
state may not impose a charge for the enjoyment of a right granted by the federal constitution.
This tax is not a charge for the enjoyment of a privilege or benefit bestowed by the state. The
privilege in question exists apart from state authority. It is guaranteed the people by the federal
Pursuant to the National Constitution, the Arizona Constitution and numerous United States
Supreme Court decisions the County of Navajo is, without any legal authority, imposing either
an unapportioned direct tax on real property, which is forbidden by United States Supreme Court
decisions, or the County of Navajo is converting a Right expressed within and guaranteed by the
National Constitution at Article IV, Section 2 into a taxable privilege; which, again, is forbidden
by United States Supreme Court decision.
Therefore, for A.R.S. 42-12003 to remain free of constitutional doubt the word “owner’s” as is
utilized within A.R.S. 42-12003 cannot be interpreted to include Citizens of the several
States/United States. The word “owner’s” as utilized within said statute can only include noncitizens.
The above statement is validated by the utilization of the word “residence” within A.R.S. 42-
12003: Class three property; definition A. For purposes of taxation, class three is established
consisting of real and personal property and improvements to the property that are used as the
owner’s primary residence…”
There is a legal definition for the word “residence,” and there is also a legal definition for a word
very similar in nature to “residence” and that word is “domicile.”
Compare the two definitions:
Domicile: “That place where a man has his true fixed and permanent home and principle
establishment, and to which whenever he is absent he has the intention of returning. Domicile
and residence, however, are frequently distinguished, in that domicile is the home, the fixed
place of habitation; while residence is a transient place of dwelling.” Fisher v. Jordan, C.C. A.
Tex., 116 F.2d 183, 186; Minick v. Minick, 111 Fla. 469, 149 So. 483, 488; Haetzler v. Radeka,
265 Mich. 451, 251 N.W. 554. (Black’s Law Dictionary 4th revised Edition 1969)
Notice that a domicile is the fixed and permanent home, while the residence is transient in
A non-citizen would not have a domicile within the United States. A non-citizen would have a
Residence: “Domicile compared and distinguished. As domicile and residence are usually in the
same place, they are frequently used as if they had the same meaning, but they are not identical
terms, for a person may have two places of residence, as in the city or country, but only one
domicile. Residence means living in a particular locality, but domicile means living in that
locality with intent to make it a fixed and permanent home.” Fielding v. Casualty Reciprocal
Exchange, La.App., 331 So.2d 186, 188. “Residence is not synonymous with domicile though
the two terms are closely related; a person may have only one legal domicile at one time, but he
may have more than one residence. (Black’s Law Dictionary 6th Edition 1991)
Domicile: “A person may have more than one residence but only one domicile. The legal
domicile of a person is important since it, rather than the actual residence, often controls the
jurisdiction of the taxing authorities and determines where a person may exercise the privilege of
voting and other legal rights and privileges.” (Black’s Law Dictionary 6th Edition 1991)
Notice that in these two definitions a person may have more than one residence, as does the
“owner” in 42- 12003, (as is established by the word “primary” before the word residence) but a
person may have only one domicile. Further, notice that it is the person’s domicile and not the
residence that determines the jurisdiction of taxing authorities and other legal rights and
privileges. Also note that within 42-12003 the Arizona Legislature did not utilize the word
If the Arizona Legislature had omitted the word “primary” before the word “residence” then this
statute could have been interpreted to mean that the “owner” had only one residence; and, having
only one residence, that residence would have become the owner’s domicile. This would have
created the presumption that the “owner” was a Citizen, and the State Legislature would then
have imposed an excise or privilege tax on a Right expressed within and guaranteed by the
National Constitution at Article IV, Section 2. This, of course, is forbidden. (Murdock v. Penn.)
Now, the last two definitions of “domicile” and “residence” to be examined:
Domicile: “The place at which a person has been physically present and that the person regards
as home; a person’s true, fixed, principal, and permanent home, to which that person intends to
return and remain even though currently residing elsewhere.” (Black’s Law Dictionary 9th
Residence: “The act or fact of living in a given place for some time (a year’s residence in New
Jersey). Also termed residency. The place where one actually lives, as distinguished from a
domicile (she made her residence in Oregon). Residence usually just means bodily presence as an
inhabitant in a given place; domicile usually requires bodily presence plus an intention to make
the place one’s home. A person thus may have more than one residence at a time but only one
domicile.” (Black’s Law Dictionary 9th Edition 2009)
Notice, again, that a residence is temporary, but a domicile is home. The Federal courts have
also helped to define the two words: “residence” and “domicile.”
Federal Court Decisions:
Delaware L.&W. R. Co. v. Ptrowsky, C.C.A.N.Y., 250 F. 554, 557 “The words citizen and
citizenship, however, usually include the idea of domicile.” Messick v. Southern Pa. Bus Co.,
D.C. Pa., 59 F. Supp. 799, 800, “Citizenship and domicile are often synonymous.”
Notice that the Federal Courts have ruled that it is the “domicile” and not the “residence” that
determines citizenship. The Arizona Legislature did not utilize the word “domicile” within
A.R.S. 42-12003 as this statute does not apply to a Citizen of the several States/United States.
It is quite clear that the word “owner’s” can only apply to a non-citizen. A non-citizen is a guest
in the United States. A non-citizen has no Constitutional Right at Article IV, Section 2 to
acquire, own, and enjoy property within the United States. (See: Dred Scott v. Sanford) It is a
privilege for a non-citizen to own property within Navajo County, and it is only the non-citizen
who is liable for an indirect tax imposed as an excise or privilege tax on his or her property. The
property of the non-citizen is not being taxed, but the value of that property is calculated to
determine the amount of privilege tax that is owed.
For the County of Navajo to fulfill their Constitutional obligation created by Article 2, Section 5
of the Arizona Constitution the County must demonstrate error within this paper by
Constitutional citation(s) and/or United States Supreme Court decision(s).
If this is not possible, then upon proof of State/U.S. Citizenship the property of the undersigned
must be removed from the tax rolls, all delinquent taxes and tax liens must be extinguished and
all delinquent tax liens that were sold, in error, by the County of Navajo must be redeemed by the
County of Navajo.
Silence by the County of Navajo, or denial of the validity of our grievance without proof by the
County of Navajo does not fulfill the Constitutional obligation created by article 2, section 5 of
the Arizona Constitution.
When government acts outside the limits of the National Constitution/Arizona Constitution the
mandated Republican form of government is destroyed. (National Constitution Article IV,
Section 4, Arizona Constitution Article 2, Section 1) The People cease to hold all political
power. (Arizona Constitution Article 2, Section 2) Due process is extinguished (Amendment V,
Bill of Rights, Arizona Constitution Article 2, Section 4) and property is taxed and seized under
color of law. (Amendment IV, Bill of Rights) The People are, in fact, placed in a form of
involuntary servitude in a feudal like system of property ownership, (Amendment XIII to the
National Constitution) and the National Constitution and the Arizona Constitution cease to be,
“the supreme law of the land.” (Arizona Constitution Article 2, Section 3 and Article 2, Section
As we have taken the time and effort to express our grievance in writing, please respond in kind
within thirty (30) days from receipt of this petition. We are willing to meet in person to discuss
our grievance. Any correspondence should be addressed to Jeff Wallace, c/o 211 North Main
Street, Snowflake, Arizona.
So say the undersigned:
PETITION FOR REDRESS OF GRIEVANCES
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