Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Washington County, in case of Joseph R. Sepesy and Diane L. Sepesy, his wife, and Robert P. Sepesy and Loretta J. Sepesy, his wife, No. 150 October Term, 1982.
Frank A. Conte, for appellant.
Frank C. Carroll, Frank C. Carroll, P.C., for appellee.
Judges Craig and Palladino, and Senior Judge Kalish, sitting as a panel of three. Opinion by Senior Judge Kalish. Judge Palladino dissents.
[ 107 Pa. Commw. Page 228]
The Redevelopment Authority of the County of Washington (condemnor) appeals from a decision of the Court of Common Pleas of Washington County which
[ 107 Pa. Commw. Page 229]
denied its motion for post-trial relief and entered judgment in favor of Joseph R. Sepesy, Diane L. Sepesy, Robert P. Sepesy and Loretta J. Sepesy (condemnees). We affirm.
Condemnees owned a parcel of land in the Borough of California, Washington County. A restaurant with a liquor license was operated on the land. The property was condemned by condemnor on October 18, 1982. A Board of View awarded damages to condemnees in the amount of $52,900. Condemnees filed an appeal from the award.
Prior to trial, condemnor paid to condemnees $40,800 as its estimate of just compensation for general damages. In addition, condemnor paid condemnees $10,000 for business dislocation damages, and $17,465 for direct loss of personal property, i.e., the machinery, equipment, and fixtures.
At the time of trial, the building on the property had been demolished, and the liquor license was held by the Liquor Control Board for safekeeping. The jury returned a verdict for damages to condemnees in the amount of $110,000. Condemnor filed a motion for post-trial relief which was denied.
Condemnor contends that this case raises the question of the applicability of the Assembled Economic Unit Doctrine to the facts of this case, specifically in reference to the damages to be paid for the real estate and the liquor license only, where the bulk of the personal property, including the liquor license, is movable. Condemnor asserts that the Assembled Economic Unit Doctrine may not apply to valuation of a restaurant and liquor license, and that the trial court erred in its charge to the jury in connection with the standard to be used in determining the value of the real estate where the building was a restaurant-tavern with a liquor-dispensing license.
[ 107 Pa. Commw. Page 230]
Our scope of review is limited to a determination of whether the trial court abused its discretion or committed an error of law. Pidstawski v. South Whitehall Township, 33 Pa. Commonwealth Ct. 162, 380 A.2d 1322 (1977).
The just compensation to which condemnees are entitled, pursuant to section 601 of the Eminent Domain Code (Code), Act of June 22, 1964, Special Sess., P.L. 84, as amended, 26 P.S. § 1-601, as applied to real estate, is the fair market value of condemnees' entire interest. Fair market value is defined as the price which would be agreed upon by a willing buyer and seller, including such factors as the use of the property, ...