Ohio ~ Property Tax: All Evidence May Be Weighed in Value Reduction

A school board of education was successful in challenging the decision of the board of tax appeals that retained the reduced values that the county board of revision adopted. A number of condominium parcels were at issue for tax years 2011, 2012, and 2013. The board of education contended that there was no sufficient basis for the reductions ordered by the board of revision and that in any event, the reduced values should not have been carried forward from tax year 2011 to tax years 2012 and 2013, because the owners filed a new complaint for tax year 2012. The Supreme Court of Ohio held that, while the carryforward of the 2011 valuations to tax years 2012 and 2013 was proper, the board of tax appeals erred by failing to independently weigh all the evidence, and vacated and remanded the decision.

The court determined that there was no provision of law that prohibits, in connection with ordering a value reduction, a board of revision’s consultation of additional evidence beyond that presented by the owner at the board’s hearing. Just as the county auditor consults its experts in originally assessing the property, the board of revision may, when reviewing the decrease complaints that come before it, elicit evidence from consultants and staff appraisers. If, in such a case, the board of revision orders a reduction and the board of education appeals to the board of tax appeals, the board of revision as an appellee can be called upon to account for the manner in which it determined the reduced value.

Columbus City Schools Bd. of Edn. v. Franklin Cty. Bd. of Revision, Ohio Supreme Court, Slip Op. No. 2017-Ohio-5823, July 18, 2017, ¶404-640

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