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DAVID FEIST AND DOLORES FEIST v. LUZERNE COUNTY BOARD ASSESSMENT APPEALS (12/04/75)

decided: December 4, 1975.

DAVID FEIST AND DOLORES FEIST, HIS WIFE, MYRTLE SINGLEY AND MARGARETA HAGSTRAND, APPELLANTS,
v.
LUZERNE COUNTY BOARD OF ASSESSMENT APPEALS, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Luzerne County in case of David Feist and Dolores Feist, his wife, Myrtle Singley and Margareta Hagstrand v. Luzerne County Board of Assessment Appeals, No. 1725 March Term, 1972.

COUNSEL

Philip F. Hudock, with him Robert P. Hudock, for appellants.

Richard S. Kempes, with him Joseph A. Quinn, Jr. and Hourigan, Kluger & Spohrer Associates, for appellee.

President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Mencer, Rogers and Blatt. Judges Kramer and Wilkinson, Jr. did not participate. Opinion by Judge Mencer.

Author: Mencer

[ 22 Pa. Commw. Page 182]

This appeal is from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Luzerne County relative to the 1972 tax assessment of three properties situate in Luzerne County. We have carefully examined the 2,936-page record in this case and conclude that the order of the trial court should be affirmed. Judge Bigelow has ably presented the essential facts and law in his opinion for the trial court; therefore, we affirm the trial court's order on Judge Bigelow's opinion, the pertinent portions of which follow:

"FINDINGS OF FACT

"1. The 1971 assessed valuation of the property owned and occupied by David Feist and Dolores Feist, his wife, appellants herein, located in Dipple Manor, Sugarloaf Township, Luzerne County, was fixed at $4,710

[ 22 Pa. Commw. Page 183]

    by the Luzerne County Board for the Assessment and Revision of Taxes, of which $1,840 was the assessment applied to the land, a parcel averaging 32 feet x 324 feet, and $2,780 was the assessment applied to the residence thereon, a one and one-half story stucco dwelling, 25 feet x 35 feet.

"2. By action of the Board for the Assessment and Revision of Taxes on August 12, 1971, the assessed valuation of this property for 1972 was raised from $4,710 to $10,060, of which the entire increase ($5,350) was applied to the assessment of the residence, the land assessment remaining the same.

"3. The notice advising the owners of this increase stated that the reason for the increase was a change in market value. The Plate Number of the property of David Feist and Dolores Feist is 58-85-1-D15.

"4. The owners appealed this increase to the Board which, after hearing, revised the residence assessment downward by $2,010, left the land assessment unchanged at $1,840, with the result that the revised assessment for the year 1972 was fixed at:

Land: $1,840

Buildings: 6,210

TOTAL: $8,050

"5. The revised assessment was appealed to this court, and hearings thereon and the other two (2) appeals herein considered were held May 30, 31, July 24, 25, 26, August 28, 29, September 1, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 14, 21, 22, October 2, 11, 31, November 1, 2, 9, 1972.

"6. The 1971 assessed valuation of the property owned and occupied by Myrtle Singley, appellant herein, located at 383 Main Street in the Borough of Conyngham, Luzerne County, was fixed by the Board for the Assessment and Revision of Taxes at $3,770, of which $1,020 was the assessment applied to the land, and $2,750 was the assessment applied to the building thereon.

[ 22 Pa. Commw. Page 184]

"7. By action of the Board for the Assessment and Revision of Taxes on August 12, 1971, the assessed valuation of this property for 1972 was raised from $3,770 to $5,050, of which the entire increase ($1,280) was applied to the assessment of the residence, the land assessment remaining the same.

"8. The notice advising the owner of this increase stated that the reason for the increase was a change in market value. The Plate Number of the property of Myrtle Singley is 8-209.

"9. The owner appealed this increase to the Board which, after hearing, denied the appeal.

"10. The assessment for 1972, namely,

Land: $1,020

Buildings: 4,030

TOTAL: $5,050

     was appealed to this Court and hearings on this appeal and the other two (2) appeals were held on the dates set forth in Finding of Fact No. 5.

"11. The 1971 assessed valuation of the property owned and occupied by Margareta Hagstrand, appellant herein, located in Sugarloaf Township, Luzerne County, was fixed at $3,060 by the Luzerne County Board for the Assessment and Revision of Taxes, of which $330 was the assessment applied to the land, and $2,730 was the assessment applied to the residence thereon.

"12. By action of the Board for the Assessment and Revision of Taxes on August 12, 1971, the assessed valuation of this property for 1972 was raised from $3,060 to $7,850, of which the entire increase ($4,790) was applied to the assessment of the residence, the land assessment remaining the same.

"13. The notice advising the owner of this increase stated that the reason for the increase was a change in market value. The Plate Number of the property of Margareta Hagstrand is 58-365-D15.

[ 22 Pa. Commw. Page 185]

"14. The owner appealed this increase to the Board which, after hearing, denied the appeal.

"15. The assessment for 1972, namely,

Land: $330

Building: 7,520

TOTAL: $7,850

     was appealed to this Court and hearings on this appeal and the other two (2) appeals were held on the dates set forth in Finding of Fact No. 5.

"16. The fair market value of the Feist real estate as of August 31, 1971, was $18,600.

"17. The fair market value of the Singley real estate as of August 31, 1971, was $11,600.

"18. The fair market value of the Hagstrand real estate as of August 31, 1971, was $20,000.

"19. In determining assessed valuation of real estate the Luzerne County Board for the Assessment and Revision of Taxes applies a thirty-five percent (35%) ratio to fair market value as fixed by the Board and this ratio is applied uniformly to such determinations of fair market value throughout Luzerne County.

"20. For the year 1972 there were 117,977 parcels of real estate assessed for tax purposes. Of this total, 4,681 parcels were assessed at higher or ...


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