Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Six Businesses Exempted from Property Taxes

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Six Businesses Exempted from Property Taxes

Article excerpt

In a 2-to-1 vote, the St. Charles County Board of Equalization has exempted six businesses at the Missouri Research Park from paying real-estate property taxes this year.

County Assessor Gene Zimmerman has fought such exemptions for at least three years; the Board of Equalization has always overruled him.

This year, Zimmerman assessed the businesses at a total of more than $8.4 million, contending that this represented the assessed value of the manufacturing portion of their operation. Based on last year's commercial tax rate for the area, the total tax revenue that would have been paid on these assessed values would have been more than $595,000.

Zimmerman has always exempted the portion of a business operation at the research park that is devoted to research and development. The land itself in the 750-acre research park, which is owned by the University of Missouri, is exempt from taxation. But Zimmerman says that he will continue to assess the for-profit manufacturing operations of businesses at the park that lease land from the university.

All businesses at the research park pay personal property taxes on their equipment.

The Board of Equalization voted last year to exempt two of the businesses, Zoltec Corp. and Missouri Research Partners, from county taxes. Zimmerman had assessed the leased real-estate value of Zoltec at $687,950, which would have yielded taxes of $48,431. He assessed the Missouri Research Partners - also known as Puritan-Bennett and Collier Properties - at $516,290, which would have yielded taxes of $36,346.

In 1993, the Board of Equalization had voted to exempt the 235-acre Missouri Bluffs Golf Course from paying taxes. The golf course's leasehold then was assessed at $243,518, an amount that would have yielded tax revenue of $15,853.

Tuesday's decision by the Board of Equalization affected Zoltec and Puritan-Bennett but not the golf course. …

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