Some major property owners in Warren County are hoping for a break on their property taxes.
Walmart, Echo Warren Associates (which developed Warren Commons and still owns several parcels there), Betts, and Northwest are among the owners that have filed appeals with the Warren County Board of Assessment Appeals, according to Warren County Chief Assessor Brian Bull.
The county commissioners and Warren County School District board held a collective closed-door meeting on the Walmart and Echo appeals last week.
A look at the Walmart appeal, on file at the Warren County prothonotary’s office, shows the company is asking for relief on the assessment of $3,230,442 on its 2901 Market St., Conewango Township, property.
Like all of the appeals, the document indicates that the assessment is “unfair, unreasonable, and excessive” and “substantially higher than assessments of comparable properties in the same neighborhood and the taxing district.”
Echo is appealing its assessments of $1,187,596 for 2759 through 2775 Market St., Conewango Township, and $166,898 for 2801 through 2821 Market St.
Language in the appeal documents is very similar. The Echo appeal includes the following:
¯ “The assessment is based on an erroneous determination of fair market value;
¯ The impact of the assessment bears unequally on the property when compared to assessment of properties in the same class;
¯ The assessment is based in whole or in part upon an appraisal that does not represent the actual value of the property;
¯ The assessment is discriminatory… unjust, and inequitable.”
The total property tax rate for Conewango Township in 2021 was 84.8371 mills. That includes 55.3371 mills from Warren County School District, 21.75 from Warren County, and 6.25 for the township, and another 1.5 for the fire department.
For every $1,000 of assessed value — which is equal to half of the market value, a property owner in Conewango Township owes about $84.84 in taxes.
In Walmart’s case, that comes out to $274,070.70.
Echo would owe $100,755.64 on one property and $14,159.63 on the other.
Bull said there had been a hearing set in the Walmart case, but it had to be rescheduled.
A bench trial involving Betts Industries and the Warren County Board of Assessment Appeals is set for Thursday, Jan. 20.