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April 9, 2021

Hermann Hospital Closing Agreement

Filed under: Uncategorized — Mark Baker @ 9:15 pm

 The Sklars claim that because “the IRS has admitted that it allows members of the Church of Scientology to deduct their payments for dener construction. To prevent the First Amendment from being violated, [the] IRS must allow followers of other faiths to deduct their payments for religious education. As the Sklars assert that the establishment clause requires us to extend the withdrawal of Scientology to all religious organizations, they are wrong for three reasons: first, we would be hesitant to think that Congress or a government agency would intend to adopt a general religious preference, by extension or otherwise, because such preferences raise the very sensitive issue of public aid to religion.   Without a clear expression of such an intention, it would be unlikely that we would extend a policy that favours a religion, in which the effect of our actions would be to create a policy that favours everyone.   Second, the Supreme Court has already stated that a policy such as the one we want to create under Lemon would be of questionable constitutional validity, as the administration of the policy may require excessive government involvement in religion.  Hernandez, 490 U.S. to 694, 109 S.C. 2136;  See Lemon, 403 U.S. at 612-13, 91 P.C. 2105.   Third, the policy to which the Sklars are trying seems to violate paragraph 170.   See Hernandez, 490 U.S.

at 692-93, 109 P.C. 2136.   To the extent that the Sklars also apply for administrative inconsistency, we reject this request for two reasons.   First, in order to make an application for administrative inconsistency, a party must demonstrate that it is similar to the group treated differently by the Agency.  United States v. Kaiser, 363 U.S. 299, 308, 80 S.C. 1204, 4 L.Ed.2d 1233 (Frankfurter, J., concordant) (“The Commissioner [IRS] cannot tax you and not another without a rational basis for difference.

  It is therefore an independent reason for decision that the Commissioner was inconsistent. We seriously doubt that the Sklars are similar to those who benefit from the Scientology closure agreement, because the religious teaching of Sklars children does not seem to resemble the audit, training or other “qualified religious services” of the Church of Scientology.   Secondly, even if they were located in this way, because the treatment they aspire to, after DemIRC, under lemon and under Hernandez, is of questionable legal and constitutional validity, we would not bear that the illegal policy set out in the final agreement should be extended to all religious organizations.   At the end of the day, we do not have to rule on the application for an establishment clause or the request for administrative inconsistency, because the Sklars have not demonstrated that their education payments constitute a “double payment” that is deductible in part under the tax code.  Therefore, we reject the argument that the final agreement with the Church of Scientology, or at least the party that sets rules or guidelines applicable to Scientology members in general, will not be made public.

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