Friday, October 21, 2011

Tax assessment appeals hurting budgets

by Natalie Kostelni

"A tentative settlement has been reached that slashes the proposed fair market value of GlaxoSmithKline’s nearly 2 million-square-foot drug manufacturing facility on River Road here to $88 million from what was $259 million four years ago.

The township, Upper Merion Area School District and Montgomery County now owe the drug company a refund of a tad more than $6 million.
The Upper Merion school district is on the hook for the bulk of the $6 million settlement. It owes about $4 million of the amount and will eventually write a $2.45 million check to the company. Smaller amounts will be paid by the township and county but most of it will be paid as a tax credit over several years. The pharmaceutical company, which had $42.5 billion in revenue last year, is the school district and township’s second -argest tax payer.

Lockheed Martin Corp. appealed its property assessment and got the value of its facilities reduced to $22 million from $45 million.

The assesed value for Glaxo’s sprawling campus off Route 29 is now set at $47.7 million. It had been $115 million.

While the school district is the biggest loser in the assessment appeals, the township also takes a hit. Commercial real estate taxes account for 11 percent of the township’s $26.3 million operating budget. It gets most of its revenues, 46 percent, from the business privilege tax.
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**If you own commercial or residential property in Montgomery County, PA and want to appeal your property taxes go here:

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