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JANE STRAYER HESS AND LAWRENCE EUGENE HESS v. MONTGOMERY COUNTY BOARD ASSESSMENT APPEALS (04/26/79)

decided: April 26, 1979.

JANE STRAYER HESS AND LAWRENCE EUGENE HESS, JR., APPELLANTS
v.
MONTGOMERY COUNTY BOARD OF ASSESSMENT APPEALS, APPELLEE



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Montgomery County in case of Montgomery County Board of Assessment Appeals v. Jane Strayer Hess and Lawrence Eugene Hess, Jr., No. 77-12707.

COUNSEL

Lawrence E. Hess, for petitioners.

Scott E. Townsley, with him Michael D. Marino, for respondent.

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

Author: Wilkinson

[ 42 Pa. Commw. Page 293]

Appellants' appeal from the action of the Montgomery County Board of Assessment Appeals to the Court of Common Pleas was stricken for failure to comply with Rule No. 920 of the Rules of Civil Procedure of Montgomery County. This appeal followed. We affirm.

The merits of the action, which were not reached by the court below and which we do not reach, involve the constitutionality of the provision in the Pennsylvania Farmland and Forest Land Assessment Act of

[ 42 Pa. Commw. Page 2941974]

, which requires that land devoted to forest reserve, in order to be eligible to have the benefits of the favorable assessment, be not less than ten contiguous acres in area. Section 3 of the Act of December 19, 1974, P.L. 973, as amended, 72 P.S. § 5490.3 (Act 319). The appellants' land for which preferential assessment was sought was determined by the Board of Assessment Appeals not to comply with the requirements of Act 319, since it contained less than seven acres.

Section 9 of Act 319, 72 P.S. § 5490.9(a) provides:

The owner of a property upon which a preferential assessment is sought, and the political subdivision in which said property is situated, shall have the right of appeal in accordance with existing law.

The existing law referred to in Act 319 is Section 9 of the Act of June 26, 1931, P.L. 1379, as amended, 72 P.S. § 5350 which provides for an appeal by any dissatisfied taxable within 30 days to the court of common pleas "in ...


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