Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on August 31, 1975 · Page 10
Get access to this page with a Free Trial
Click to view larger version
August 31, 1975

Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 10

Publication:
Location:
Charleston, West Virginia
Issue Date:
Sunday, August 31, 1975
Page:
Page 10
Cancel
Start Free Trial

Page 10 article text (OCR)

August 31,1975 Some Assessors Take Aim At the Large Landowners By Tom Miller Henld-DUpateh Writer FAYETTEVILLE. W.Va. (AP) - Large landowners in West Virginia traditionally have paid very low property taxes on their huge holdings. But this year Fayette County Assessor Harold Neely has doubled, and in some cases tripled, the tax assessments. Some of these large corporations have filed court actions to reject the higher tax bill; a final verdict from Fayette Circuit Court is pending. Oddly enough, some companies, including the"New River Co. which is the largest single landowner in the county, have made no protest even though one tract owned by New River Co., a subsidiary of the Chessie System, Inc., has been raised in assessed value from 537,301 to $103,316 this year. If Neely's move is upheld in court, Fayette County will get an additional J250.000 in real estate taxes this year, most of it coming from the 12 large companies that own more than half the land in the county. Most of the additional tax money will go to the Fayette County school system. "When i was appointed assessor in 1971, my first move was to raise the minimum value per acre from $1 ,to $10," he explained. "What 1 have done this year is raise that minimum from $10 to $30 per acre." Unlike a similar Wyoming County situation, Neely did not limit the boost to the large land companies. He applied it to the small property owner, too. "Some of the people came in to complain but when I told them I was hitting the big companies, too, they said they were behind me," he said. AS A RESULT, Pocahontas Land Corp., a wholly-owned subsidiary of Norfolk and Western Railway Co., saw a 2,123-acre tract that was assessed for $36,000 in 1974 appear on the 1975 tax books valued at $99,019. The taxes on that parcel jumped from $1,000 a year to $2,700 a year. Another large corporation, Eastern Associated Coal Corp., a subsidiary of Eastern Gas and Fuel Associates of Boston, had a 10,293 acre tract that had been valued at $358,216 in 1974 and is on the 1975 books for $663,713. But like the New River Co., Eastern has nut challenged the in- * crease. . \ Pocahontas Land Corp., however, filed , suit and soon a companion action was filed on behalf of Berwind Land Co.; Laurel · Creek Land Co.; Beechwood Coal and ^ Coke Co.; Glade Creek Land Co.; the J. L. , Beury Estate, Inc.; Little Fire Creek Coal .| Co., and Beury Coal and Coke Co. | While a final decision is pending, argu- i ments have been completed in the case. · During the hearing, attorneys for Poca- ! hontas Land introduced evidence from a J company official that indicated the firm ( was going to sell 168 acres in the county for $25 an acre. The transaction, however, still hasn't been recorded, according to Neely, and a hearing transcript reveals the same official acknowledged under cross-examination a value of $150,000 for timber on 15 of 168 acres. Berwind Land Co. seemingly faces a quandary since the same court is weighing arpments in a condemnation case filed by the State Department of Highways in its efforts to acquire 57 acres from Berwind for road construction. According to Neely, Berwind attorneys maintain in the assessment case the land should not be valued at $60 per acre for tax purposes (assessments are traditionally 50 per cent of this) but are asking the SDH to pay about $8,000 per acre. * * * A SIMILAR situation has surfaced in Mingo County where the county commis- son wants to buy land from Georgia-Pacific Corp., one of four large landowners i there. The land,'to be used for a county landfill, is assessed at a value of $37.50 per acre but G-P officials have told the commission they won't accept less than $1,200 per acre for the property. The commission holds the authority to review and revise tax assessments when it sits as a board of equalization and review each February, and the Mingo County commissioners have served notice they intend to exercise that authority in 1976. The Webster County Commission already has made such a move. In 1974, the assessor valued at $28,600 a 1,589-acre tract owned by Pardee and Curtin Lumber Co. The commission increased the value to $37.180. This year the original assessment was boosted to $79,450, but the ultimate decision was $119,450. The result is that the company will pay approximately $2,300 in taxes on the land in 1975 compared to about $700 last year, helping to spur a $25.000 increase in real estate tax revenues for the county this year when most counties are experiencing declining revenues because of the homestead exemption amendment. This exempts the first $5,000 of assessed value on persons 65 or older from property taxes. Lack of up-to-date appraisals is another factor and State Tax Commissioner Richard Dailey is in the midst of a state reappraisal to assist the county assessors who must then assess at a figure no less than 50 per cent of the appraised value. The first impact of this was felt in Berkeley County this year with real estate tax receipts.up from $1,687.594 to 82,182.621. 1! \Ve only did the land values without considering the improvements and buildings." said Dailey. "and assessments increased an average of 27 per cent. If we had included the buildings, I believe assessments would have increased at least 50 per cent" Entirely separate from the over-all reappraisal of all land, buildings and industrial property is the state's first effort to provide mineral appraisals to assessors. Corporation SutBOeryGflJif.MKa ROBERT E. AGSTEN, INC. 201 on UK., ounmo, w. v. MMI """ OPEN UBO« DAY 91. 9* * * * * * * * * ***OPtM LABOR DAY 9 lo 9 * * * * * * * * * * * * * A * »OKIUA»OKUM ised impatient legislators last winter he would provide a short-term, spot analysis appraisal system for critical miner al counties. The first results are due by the end of the year. Neely admits it was impatience that prompted his efforts to raise mineral assessments without benefit of any concrete appraisals. Because he extended it to all property owners, large and small, both he and DaUey believe it has a chance of being supported in court. BEAUTY IS MORE THANSKII I 3=1 ' ae good - . components aDd textures Beaer ei ·heyaTe effacsent anci tess costiy m toe long fun You a save money disr *ng oesign and construction stages. Your buildings wtU igo up tasler. start producing sooner, and begin to return your invested dollars quicker. That s the true beauty of Republic pre-engineered buildings. Find out firsthand how we can help you Coll 344-3671 MOM 344-3*71 WEEK-END BONANZA SALE 14 BIG DAYS FRI. SAT. SUNDAY MONDAY OPEN LABOR DAY 9 to 9 DON'T MISS THIS BIG EVENT! SAVE 20%-30%-40% OR MORE BE-HERE-WHEH-THE-DOORS-SWING-OPEN Bings has drastically cut prices on everything that is not nailed to the floor. Save on famous name brands such as Bassett, Sawyers, Singer, Deville, Burlington House, Forrest Kemp, Lea,Trendline,Beena, Classic, Chestnut Creek -D.M.I, and Many, Many More. e * * * * * LIVING ROOM SUITES OVER500TO CHOOSE-FROM · Velvets ·Traditional* ·Spanish · Contemporary ·Modern · Sectionals ·Vinyls, etc. 2 pe. suites $1 QA95 in nylon As low as SAVINGS GALORE ON: ·Maple, Oak and Pine Dinettes with treated tops · Reclining Chairs · Swivel Rockers ·Hollywood Beds · Dinette Sets · Bedding ·Never Before So Many Bargains at such Low, Low Prices PRICES SLASHED ON: Kelvinator Refrigerators · Freezers ·Ranges · Washers · Dryers ·Air Conditioners · RCA and Admiral Color and B W TV · Stereos, etc. OUT THEY GO! * * * * BEDROOM SUITE SELL-OUT Over 4fl DIFFERENT NAME BRAND SUITES Mown On Out Floors-ln Early American, MedHerraiuon-French ·lovincial- Modern-Contemnorary. These Ensembles Priced To Sell Fast. So Hurry In For ksiSde.tio.At BINGS SACRIFICE PRICES. We Specialize In... FAMOUS NAME BRAND SLEEPERS One Of The Largest Selections In The Trl-State Aren-OVEtt 30 SHOWN OH OUR FLOORS. In Traditional, Early American, Contemporary, Modern, Some With Matching Chairs. Regular And Queen Size. Many In Nylon And Herculon Fabrics. STARTING AS LOW AS* 169" You May Have A Beautiful Sofa By Day And An Extra Bed At Night. Commode and Cocktail Tables Bean Bags Floorlamps Table Lamps BookCases Mirrors Room Divider Desk Bunk Beds Swag Lamps Dinette Sets 5 7 piece MAN SIZE Tufted RECLINERS Over 50 To Choose From Start at 69" * * * * * e* O THE HOLIDAYS ARE CLOSER THAN YOU REALIZE-Shop Now For That ONCE-IN-ALIFE-TIME SAVING ON ALL OUR FAMOUS NAME BRAND DINING ROOM SUITES 25 DIFFERENT SETS Shown On Our Floor For Immediate Delivery, Including Modern, Mediterranean, Early American, Maple, Pine, Pecan, Oak Finishes. 91" SOFA CHAIR, Tufted Velvet *299' 5 Matching Love Seat * 189 W CONSOLE STEREOS with AM-FM Radio-1 8 TRACK TAPE FROM * * * * * * * O* e OPEN SUN. 1 to 6 WEEKDAYS 9 to 9 SATURDAYS 9 to 5 OPEN LABOR DAY 9 TO 9 NO PHONE CALLS DURING THIS SALE It is a stow process and until the perma- r , nent system is completed, Dailey prom- jjrjy y y Qpgfl LAIOR DAY 9 U' 1301 -03-05 WEST WASHINGTON ST. CHARLESTON W. VA. .C.O.D. OraUAIMMYftot FIND OUT WHY THOUSANDS OF OTHER AREA RESIDENTS HAVE LEARNED IT PAYS TO J SHOP BINGS BEFORE 5 YOU BUY ANYWHERE. « ·········iiVMb O 5 WAYS TO BUY! | · Budget Monthly § Charge ·BankAmericard ·Master Charge Lay Away 1.

Get full access with a Free Trial

Start Free Trial

What members have found on this page