The Balearic government, which is already bogged down in an internal political battle over the tourist tax, could find itself trapped in a legal dispute over the tax the Majorcan Hotel Federation warned yesterday. The Federation's legal representative Juan Buades said yesterday that the organisation is more than prepared to take the tax dispute to the appeals court and the warning coincided with the Federation's strongest rejection yet of the proposed tourist tax. The tax could be introduced next summer which will mean hotel guests will be forced to pay as much as an extra two Euros per day, but the Hotel Federation's lawyers in Madrid are drawing to the conclusion of their case against the tax. Buades said that their lawyers are studying not only the legal implications of the levy, but also the economic ramifications of the tax which the hoteliers are adamant will be seriously detrimental to the hotel industry and are not backing down. However, before taking legal action, the Hotel Federation will present its objections to the tax to all of the political parties in parliament, but Buades warned that if their objections and fears fall on deaf ears, the Federation will be left with no alternative but to instruct their lawyers to proceed. This week's political rift in the left wing coalition sparked by the Green Party in Ibiza and Majorca being unable to agree on whether to vote in favour of the tax as it stands, has stalled the political process and given the Hotel Federation some extra breathing space to prepare its defence. The leader of the Majorcan Unionist Party and President of the Insular Council of Majorca, Maria Antonia Munar, whose party's crucial votes swung the coalition government into power at the last election, is still at the Olympics and thus her opinions on the current crisis have yet to be heard.

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