Congressman Adrian Smith’s liaison Phillip Black, left, met with the Chase County Commissioners, from left, Don Weiss, Jr.,  Chuck Vette and Dave Hogsett last week during their regular meeting. (Johnson Publications photo)

BOE agrees with assessor: Imperial lots are taxable

    Chase County Assessor Dotty Bartels presented a protest by the City of Imperial to the Board of Equalization (BOE), made up of Chase County Commissioners Dave Hogsett, Chuck Vette and Don Weiss, Jr, during the BOE meeting April 10.
    The city protested the assessor’s valuation of a chunk of properties in east Imperial. Taxed as lots since 2013, city officials believe the lots are public purpose and should not be taxed.
    “Economic development is public purpose,” Imperial Community Development Director Jason Tuller said.
    Tuller said the land is currently not being used and therefore should have no valuation.
    “We’re not making any money off of it,” Tuller said, but he went on to indicate the land would be used for development in the future.
    Tuller also indicated that one lot is a retention pond.
    Bartels said the county would tax a private entity’s retention pond, but Tuller noted the city’s other retention ponds are not taxed.
    The commissioners had no problem with not taxing the retention pond.
    Bartels said she did not see the other land in this protest fitting into the same category of other city-owned land, such as the recycling center or “dump yard” which the county does not tax.
    “It’s sitting there until they can get it sold,” Bartels said.
    When asked what would happen with the land if it was owned by a private individual, Bartels said the county would tax it.
    The commissioners unanimously approved leaving the properties, with exception of the retention pond, as taxable.
    The city can appeal the decision to the Tax Equalization and Review Commission until June 1.
Dissolution of SWA
    During the commissioners’ regular meeting on April 10, board members touched on several issues they want included as part of the dissolution of the Southwest Nebraska Solid Waste Agency (SWA).

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