Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Dauphin County in case of Appeal of Charles and Genevieve Emerick, Carl M. Peffley, Dan Peffley, George Lauer, and Robert and Joan Smith, and Frank Twardzik, on behalf of themselves and all other Dauphin County Residential Property Owners from the Decision of the Dauphin County Board of Assessment Appeals, No. 5644-S-1979.
David L. Kurtz, for appellants.
Herbert A. Schaffner, Reynolds, Bihl & Schaffner, for appellee.
President Judge Crumlish, Jr., and Judges MacPhail and Doyle, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by President Judge Crumlish, Jr.
[ 74 Pa. Commw. Page 107]
Charles and Genevieve Emerick appeal a Dauphin County Common Pleas order which denied their petition for class certification. We affirm.
The Emericks seek to certify a class action challenge to the Dauphin County Board of Assessment's method of valuing real property and the assessment ratio used to compute real estate taxes. They contend that the County's failure to answer their petition entitles them to certification. We find this contention without merit.*fn1
Well-pleaded class action allegations, if admitted by the class opponent, may be considered as evidence at the class certification hearing . . . . The prima facie showing shifts to the class opponent
[ 74 Pa. Commw. Page 108]
the burden of coming forward with contrary evidence . . . . If there is an actual conflict on an essential fact, the class proponent bears the risk of non-persuasion.
Janicik v. Prudential Insurance Co. of America, Pa. Superior Ct. , , 451 A.2d 451, 455-56 (1982) (citations omitted).
We affirm on the basis of the opinion of Caldwell, J.,*fn2 Pa. D. ...