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GRIMM v. PITTSBURGH (07/22/71)

decided: July 22, 1971.

GRIMM
v.
PITTSBURGH



Appeal from the Judgment of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County, Civil Division, No. 2287, April Term, 1970 in case of In Re: Petition of the City of Pittsburgh.

COUNSEL

Edwin F. Ellis, for appellant.

Ralph Lynch, Jr., and Sal L. Farino, for appellee.

Harold Gondelman, with him William G. Sutter, Jr., and Joseph Gariti, III, for Urban Redevelopment Authority of Pittsburgh, intervenor.

President Judge Bowman, and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer, Wilkinson, Jr., Manderino, Mencer and Rogers. Opinion by Judge Manderino. Dissenting Opinion by Judge Mencer.

Author: Manderino

[ 2 Pa. Commw. Page 601]

This appeal challenges the validity of a tax sale of 210 vacant lots in the 28th Ward in the City of Pittsburgh to the Urban Redevelopment Authority of the City of Pittsburgh. The 210 lots had been acquired by

[ 2 Pa. Commw. Page 602]

    three taxing bodies (City of Pittsburgh, School District of Pittsburgh and County of Allegheny) over a period of years. The City of Pittsburgh, acting as trustee for all taxing bodies, petitioned the Court of Common Pleas for approval of the contemplated sale of the properties to the Redevelopment Authority. The Authority participated in the proceedings as an intervenor.

The petition of the City of Pittsburgh requested the court to approve the sale of the properties to the Urban Redevelopment Authority for one dollar. Proper notices having been given after the filing of the petition as required by law, interested persons were permitted to submit other offers for the said properties.

The court received one other offer which was submitted by Louis L. Grimm (Appellant) who offered to purchase the properties for $53,000.

The Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County approved the sale of the properties for one dollar to the Urban Redevelopment Authority.

Grimm challenges the order of the court below and argues that his offer of $53,000 should have been accepted by the court.

We first note that the law does not require the approval of the sale of these properties to the highest bidder. Rather the law gives discretion to the court to approve a sale that appears to be ". . . in the interest of all taxing authorities having claims against the land. . . ." (Act of July 5, 1947, P.L. 1258; 53 P.S. 26114). Unless the lower court abused its discretion or committed ...


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