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Thursday, September 02, 2010

Ind. Courts - Tax Court issues one opinion today

In 6787 Steelworkers Hall, Inc. v. John R. Scott, Assessor of Porter County, an 11-page opinion, Judge Fisher writes:

6787 Steelworkers Hall, Inc. (hereinafter, “Local 6787”) appeals the final determination of the Indiana Board of Tax Review (Indiana Board) denying its application for an educational/charitable purposes property tax exemption for the 2006 tax year (the year at issue). Local 6787’s appeal presents a single issue for this Court’s review: whether the Indiana Board’s denial of Local 6787’s exemption application is supported by substantial evidence.

* * * During the year at issue, Local 6787 owned and operated a banquet facility and a union hall in Portage, Indiana (Portage Township). * * *

The evaluation of whether property is used for educational/charitable purposes is a fact-sensitive inquiry; there are no bright-line tests. See Jamestown Homes, 914 N.E.2d at 15 (citation omitted). Here, the Indiana Board’s final determination indicates that it assigned minimal weight to Local 6787’s arguments because they were not supported by substantial evidence. As the fact finder, it was well within the purview of the Indiana Board to make that determination. See French Lick Twp. Tr. Assessor v. Kimball Int’l, Inc., 865 N.E.2d 732, 739 (Ind. Tax Ct. 2007) (explaining the taxpayer bears the burden of making the Indiana Board understand its evidence).

Posted by Marcia Oddi on September 2, 2010 02:41 PM
Posted to Ind. Tax Ct. Decisions