Appeals from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Westmoreland County in cases of Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corporation and Monessen Southwestern Railroad, a wholly owned subsidiary of Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corporation v. The Board of Revision of Taxes and Appeals of the City of Monessen, Nos. 3008 through 3022 of 1975, 1371 through 1375 of 1976 and 4195 through 4199 of 1976; and Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corporation and Monessen Southwestern Railroad, a wholly owned subsidiary of Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corporation v. The Board of Assessment of Appeals of the County of Westmoreland, Nos. 3421 and 3623 of 1975 and 3736 of 1976.
Leonard M. Mendelson, with him T. Lawrence Palmer, and Hollinshead and Mendelson, for appellants.
John N. Scales, with him Scales & Shaw; John W. Pollins, III, and Hammer & Pollins, for appellee, City of Monessen.
Daniel Myshin, for appellee, School District of City of Monessen.
President Judge Bowman and Judges Crumlish, Jr., Wilkinson, Jr., Mencer, Rogers, DiSalle and Craig. Judges Blatt and MacPhail did not participate. Opinion by President Judge Bowman.
[ 40 Pa. Commw. Page 307]
Pursuant to Section 762(a)4 of the Judicial Code, 42 Pa. C.S. § 762(a)4, appellants, Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corporation, and its wholly owned subsidiary,
[ 40 Pa. Commw. Page 308]
Monessen Southwestern Railroad (hereinafter referred to jointly as Wheeling or taxpayer), have appealed to this Court from an order of the Court of Common Pleas of Westmoreland County dismissing numerous, consolidated appeals taken to it from decisions of the Board of Revision of Taxes and Appeals of the City of Monessen (hereinafter Monessen or City) and the Board of Assessment of Appeals of the County of Westmoreland (hereinafter Westmoreland or County).
The subject of these assessment disputes is a crescent shaped tract of 143.4 acres located along the Monongahela River in Monessen. Contributing to the disagreement over fair market value of the realty as developed is the presence of a basic oxygen steel manufacturing facility (BOF) and a "shed," valued by the trial court at $89,250, adjacent to the BOF. In a prior case, Wheeling-Pittsburgh Steel Corp. v. Board of Assessment Appeals of the County of Westmoreland, 25 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 194, 360 A.2d 265 (1976) (hereinafter Wheeling-Pittsburgh) we concluded that the BOF was not subject to taxation under Section 201 of The General County Assessment Law, Act of May 22, 1933, P.L. 853, as amended, 72 P.S. § 5020-201. The trial court in the present case ordered that our prior decision be applied prospectively from the date of our Order, June 16, 1976, and, therefore, no return of any tax paid on the BOF prior to that date was required. It also directed that the shed be included in the fair market valuation. Thus, as to the City's assessments for the triennial periods beginning in 1973 and 1976, Wheeling contests the fair market value as found by the trial court, the inclusion of the shed in that valuation, the failure to exclude the BOF from assessments prior to June 16, 1976, and the figure found by the court to be the proper ratio of assessed value to fair market value in Monessen.
[ 40 Pa. Commw. Page 309]
Wheeling also challenges the County's assessment for 1976 and 1977, but not the applied assessment-market value ratio. Nor is the BOF a factor in the County appeals.
Extensive testimony, much of it contradictory, was received by the trial court, which made, inter alia, the ...