Tax Court affirms calculated property tax cap on Kokomo property – Katie Stancombe – The Indiana Lawyer

The Indiana Tax Court has affirmed the property tax liability assessed against a Howard County urban development company, finding issue with the company’s argument concerning Indiana’s definition of gross assessed value.

Kokomo Urban Development, LLC owns a moderate-income apartment complex in an economic revitalization area, or ERA, of Kokomo. As a result, Kokomo Urban was entitled to 100 percent ERA deduction for the 2015 tax year and a 50 percent deduction for the 2016 tax year.

In 2016, the Howard County auditor determined Kokomo Urban’s property tax liability was $47,720.46, which did not exceed the calculated 2 percent tax cap amount of $49,134. Kokomo Urban, however, argued its liability should have been capped at $25,000 under Indiana Code section 6-1.1-20.6-7.5. The issue, the company argued, was whether the 2 percent tax cap under that statute should have been applied to the property before or after the ERA deduction.

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Bill would reverse court ruling defining tax – Niki Kelly – The Journal Gazette

INDIANAPOLIS – A House panel approved a bill Monday that would reverse a court ruling on what constitutes a tax in Indiana.

Lawmakers are trying to undo an Indiana Tax Court ruling that could have profound negative impacts on local government finance around the state.

But even some of the legislators in support of the measure disagree with the basis of the bill – a user fee versus a tax.

Rep. John Young, R-Franklin, said he isn’t sure the case “is going to turn everything on its head” but that it puts the legislature in a tough position.

He added that you can call them fees all you want but “I don’t know why a stormwater fee that you can’t opt out of isn’t a property tax.”

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7th Circuit case highlights confusion over online home value ‘Zestimates’ – Olivia Covington – Indiana Lawyer.com

Buying a home is an exciting process, but it can also be confusing. Navigating the world of competing offers, title transfers and appraisals can be difficult, especially when buyers and sellers don’t use real estate agents to facilitate the process.

To ease some of that burden, real estate website Zillow offers a tool known as a home value “Zestimate.” Using public data, Zestimates, as the name implies, provide an estimate of how much a home is worth. That amount is listed on a home’s Zillow profile alongside the seller’s asking price, allowing buyers to compare the two.

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Court rejects property tax exemption for Portage Steelworkers hall – Dan Carden – NWITimes.com

INDIANAPOLIS — United Steelworkers Local 6787 is not primarily a charitable or educational entity, and, as a result, its Portage union hall and banquet center are not eligible for a property tax exemption.

In a 12-page ruling, Indiana Tax Court Judge Martha Blood Wentworth rejected the union’s claim that because its members generally are better educated than other citizens due to participation in union activities, and its buildings sometimes are used for free by charitable groups, that it qualifies to pay no property tax.

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