If a law is to be passed, the constitution must legitimize a legislative body and give it the authority to legislate. The Basic Law of the Federal Republic of Germany assigns the organs involved in the federal state structure different legislative powers in the field of taxes.
The federal government has legislative sovereignty over customs duties and financial monopolies (Art. 105 I GG). The federal government has competing legislative competence for all other taxes, insofar as it is entitled to the revenue from them in whole or in part (Article 105 II GG). If the federal government has not made use of its legislative competence, the states can enact tax laws.
Da der Bund jedoch sein Gesetzgebungsrecht umfassend genutzt hat, ist der Handlungsrahmen der Länder begrenzt. Sie dürfen jedoch zu den örtlichen Verbrauch- und Expense taxes Gesetze erlassen (Art. 105 IIa GG).
The municipalities have no right to legislate, but can adopt statutes. Federal laws on taxes, the revenue of which is wholly or partly due to the states or municipalities, may only be enacted with the consent of the Bundesrat.