Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia County in case of Penn Federal Savings and Loan Association of Philadelphia v. Tax Review Board of the City of Philadelphia, No. 460 July Term, 1973.
Richard F. Stern, with him Stern, Maxmin & Stern, for appellant.
Claudia Kapustin, Assistant City Solicitor, with her James M. Penny, Jr., Assistant City Solicitor, Raymond Kitty, Deputy City Solicitor, and Sheldon L. Albert, City Solicitor, for appellee.
President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Kramer, Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer, Rogers and Blatt. Opinion by Judge Wilkinson, Jr.
[ 18 Pa. Commw. Page 531]
Appellant appeals from a decision of the Court of Common Pleas of Philadelphia which affirmed the determination of the Tax Review Board of Philadelphia denying a refund of $43,062.93.*fn1 There is no dispute as to what took place. A corporation owned a property at 2300
[ 18 Pa. Commw. Page 532]
Walnut Street in Philadelphia, the taxes on which, in 1972, were $43,062.93. An individual who was identified with the corporation and who had his office in the corporation building owned a property at 220 Rittenhouse Square in the same city. The individual had placed a mortgage to appellant on 220 Rittenhouse Square, properly giving his business address as 2300 Walnut Street. Following what was apparently a practice to pay taxes on real estate on which it held a mortgage and to charge the account of the mortgagor, appellant requested the city to supply it with the amount of the taxes on 2300 Walnut Street, the mailing address of the mortgagor rather than the address of the mortgaged property. The amount of the tax was properly supplied. Appellant paid the taxes in June of 1972.*fn2
In November of 1972, appellant discovered its error and filed for a refund. It is conceded by all that taxes, once paid, may not be refunded absent statutory authority. Calvert Distillers Corporation v. Board of Finance and Revenue, 376 Pa. 476, 103 A.2d 668 (1954); Wilson v. Philadelphia School District, 328 Pa. 225, 195 A. 90 (1937); Hazleton National Bank v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, 10 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 366, 308 A.2d 195 (1973).
The statutory authority relied upon by appellant here is Section 19-1703(1)(a) of the Philadelphia Code of Municipal Ordinances, which provides:
"The Department of Collections may grant a refund, in whole or in part, upon determination that a
[ 18 Pa. Commw. Page 533]
tax, water or sewer rent, license fee or other charge, interest or penalty, or any part thereof, has been paid under mistake of ...