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Assessment appeal on new Washington County Hospital site postponed

November 29, 2007|By ANDREW SCHOTZ

WASHINGTON COUNTY - The parent company of Washington County Hospital is challenging the assessment on the land where it expects to build a new hospital.

A hearing on the appeal was scheduled Tuesday, but was postponed until next year.

Washington County Endowment Development Co. Inc. owns a 46.33-acre parcel along Robinwood Drive. The land, adjacent to Robinwood Medical Center, is where a new Washington County Hospital would be built, according to Tim O'Rourke, the supervisor of assessments for Washington County for the Maryland Department of Assessments and Taxation.

The state assessed the land at $100,000 per acre, O'Rourke said. Washington County Endowment Development Co. has appealed the assessment, arguing that it's too high. The owner submitted a list of other property sales as an indication of the current market, O'Rourke said, but has not argued what the correct assessment should be.

The appeal will be heard by a Property Tax Assessment Appeals Board, a state agency independent of the Department of Assessments and Taxation, O'Rourke said. He predicted the hearing would be in March.

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The hospital project has received local approvals but has been held up in court.

The Maryland Court of Special Appeals has upheld approvals, but a group of residents asked the court last month to reconsider the ruling for a second time. As of Wednesday, no final decision had been made.

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