STATE TAX COMMISSION OF MISSOURI
|HASKELL & NANCY ALLEN,||)|
|v.||)||Appeal No. 17-10376|
|)||Parcel/locator No. 20K430063|
|JAKE ZIMMERMAN, ASSESSOR||)|
|ST. LOUIS COUNTY, MISSOURI,||)|
DECISION AND ORDER
The assessment made by the Board of Equalization of St. Louis County (BOE) is SET ASIDE. Complainants Haskell and Nancy Allen (Complainants) did not present substantial and persuasive evidence to rebut the presumption of correct assessment by the BOE and to establish the true value in money (TVM) of the subject property as of January 1, 2017. Respondent Jake Zimmerman, Assessor, St. Louis County, Missouri, (Respondent) presented substantial and persuasive evidence rebutting the presumption of correct assessment by the BOE and establishing the TVM of the subject property as $394,000 ($74,860 assessed value) as of January 1, 2017.
Haskell Allen (Complainant) appeared pro se; Nancy Allen appeared not.
Respondent appeared by Counsel Steven Robson.
Case heard and decided by Senior Hearing Officer Amy S. Westermann (Hearing Officer).
Complainants appealed on the ground of overvaluation. Respondent initially set the TVM of the subject property, as residential property, at $413,600. The BOE set the TVM at $413,600, thereby sustaining Respondent’s valuation. The value as of January 1 of the odd numbered year remains the value as of January 1 of the following even numbered year unless there is new construction or improvement to the property. Section 137.115.1 RSMo The State Tax Commission (STC) takes this appeal to determine the TVM for the subject property as the property existed on January 1, 2017, under the economic conditions as they existed on January 1, 2017.
The Hearing Officer, having considered all of the competent evidence upon the whole record, enters the following Decision and Order.
FINDINGS OF FACT
- Jurisdiction. Jurisdiction over this appeal is proper. Complainants timely appealed to the State Tax Commission.
- Evidentiary Hearing. The issue of overvaluation was presented at an evidentiary hearing on October 4, 2018, at the St. Louis County Government Administration Building, 41 South Central Avenue, Clayton, Missouri.
- Identification of Subject Property. The subject property is identified by parcel/locator number 20K430063. It is further identified as 9040 Monmouth Drive, St. Louis County, Missouri. (Complaint for Review)
- Description of Subject Property. The subject property consists of a 32,208 square foot (nearly .75 acre) residential lot improved by a 2,217 square foot, single-family, ranch-style home built in 1953. (Exhibit F; Exhibit 1) The home includes three bedrooms; two full bathrooms; a full basement; a two-car garage; a porch and a patio; and two fireplaces. The exterior consists of brick construction. (Exhibit F; Exhibit 1) The subject property has a quality of construction rating of Q5/C+ and a condition rating of C4/average. (Exhibit F; Exhibit 1) The subject property is located in Central St. Louis County in the municipality of Richmond Heights. (Exhibit F; Exhibit 1)
- Assessment. Respondent initially valued the subject property at $413,600 residential, as of January 1, 2017.
- Board of Equalization. The BOE valued the subject property at $413,600.
- Complainant’s Evidence. Complainant opined that the subject property’s TVM as of January 1, 2017, was $310,000. To support his opinion of value, Complainant offered the following evidence:
|Exhibit A||Complainant’s comparable sales and map||Admitted|
|Exhibit B||St. Louis County Sales Analysis Report||Admitted|
|Exhibit C||St. Louis County parcel map of subject property||Admitted|
|Exhibit D||Photos of subject property at time of sale in 2014||Admitted|
|Exhibit E||Settlement statement for subject property dated March 14, 2014||Admitted|
|Exhibit F||Property Record Card for subject property||Admitted|
During the Evidentiary Hearing, Complainant testified that Respondent’s original comparable sales contained bad data and were faulty. Complainant testified that the subject property is located in the municipality of Richmond Heights, backs to a 10-lane highway, and is in the same neighborhood with some rental properties, factors which reduce the value of the subject property. Complainant testified that the neighborhood borders on the City of Ladue, a municipality in central St. Louis County with higher-priced real estate than Richmond Heights. Complainant testified that the assessed value of the subject property had increased 42% from the date of purchase in March 2014 to January 1, 2017. Complainant testified that such an increase in a 24 month period was “illogical.” Complainant testified that the subject property’s value is adversely affected due to the presence of ugly highway sound walls, a leaky basement, and a dated kitchen and dated bathrooms. Complainant testified that he wanted to live in the subject property’s neighborhood and “jumped on” the sale of the subject property. Complainant testified that the sale was an open market sale. Complainant’s Exhibit F, the property record card for the subject property, stated that the sale was “not open market.” (Exhibit F)
On cross examination, Complainant testified that he saw a “for sale” sign for the subject property when driving through the neighborhood. He immediately called the realtor.
On re-direct examination, Complainant testified that he wrote an offer on the subject property the same day he saw a “coming soon” sign. Complainant testified that he had been looking in the subject property’s neighborhood because he was downsizing and the home would be affordable. Complainant testified that the list price was $300,000 but that he negotiated a purchase price of $285,000 through seller credits. Complainant testified that he just happened to get to the subject property before anyone else made an offer on it.
On re-cross examination, Complainant testified that he did not know the name of the seller but that he knew the subject property had been a rental property prior to its sale.
Exhibit A, sales listings obtained from the multi-listing service, provided sales data for Complainant’s five comparable properties. All but one were ranch-style homes situated on residential lots within .25 miles or less from the subject property; one was a “tear-down.” The comparable properties sold between August 2014 and October 2016. The sale prices of the comparables ranged from $205,000 to $352,500. Exhibit A did not make any market-based adjustments to the comparable properties. (Id.)
Comparable No. 2 was on the same street as the subject property, only .05 miles away, and backed to the highway. Comparable No. 2 consisted of an approximately 13,200 square foot (.316 acre) residential lot improved by a 1,962 square foot, single-family, ranch-style home built around 1950. (Exhibit A) The home included two bedrooms; one full bathroom; one half bathroom; a full basement; a two-car garage; and a covered patio. (Id.) Comparable No. 2 entered the market on April 26, 2014, at a list price of $259,900. Comparable No. 2 sold for $205,000 in October 2014, seven months after Complainant’s purchase of the subject property. (Id.)
Unlike the subject property, Comparable No. 4, the “tear down,” was .25 miles from the subject property and did not back to the highway. Comparable No. 4 consisted of an approximately 28,575 square foot (.656 acre) residential lot improved by a 2,737 square foot, single-family, ranch-style home built around 1955. (Exhibit A) Although the sale listing provided basic information describing the residence, the sale listing remarked “FOR COMP PURPOSES ONLY. VALUE IS IN THE LAND.” (Exhibit A) Comparable No. 4, sold for $275,000 on October 31, 2016. (Exhibit A) However, according to Complainant’s Exhibit A, Comparable No. 4 did not enter the market until November 1, 2016, one day after its sale date. (Exhibit A) The property record card in the St. Louis County Real Estate Information Database recorded the 2016 sale as “land only” and “not open market.” The property record card recorded a valid sale of Comparable No. 4 in the amount of $350,000 on October 27, 2017.
- Respondent’s Evidence. Respondent opined that the TVM of the subject property as of January 1, 2017, was $394,000, which was lower than the BOE’s determination of TVM. To support his opinion of value, Respondent offered the following evidence:
|Exhibit 1||The appraisal report of Barry Hough||Admitted|
|WDT||Written Direct Testimony of Barry Hough||Admitted|
|WRT||Written Rebuttal Testimony of Barry Hough||Admitted|
Respondent also presented the testimony of certified real estate appraiser Barry Hough (the Appraiser). The Appraiser testified that the primary issue regarding the value of the subject property was that it “backs to” an interstate. On cross examination, the Appraiser testified that some of Respondent’s comparable properties were located in Richmond Heights and some were located in Ladue. The Appraiser testified that there was no significant difference in value based on the comparables’ location in one municipality versus the other. The Appraiser testified that the subject property is actually located in the Ladue School District. The Appraiser testified that he did not use Complainant’s Comparable No. 2, which was on the same street as the subject property, because it had sold outside the timeframe for a 2017 valuation and differed “too much physically” from the subject property. The Appraiser considered the property an “outlier” that could have been priced significantly higher or lower than the subject property.
On redirect examination, the Appraiser testified that Complainant’s purchase of the subject property in March 2014 was not used in the appraisal report because it was not a standard market transaction as it had sold before being exposed to the market.
In his written rebuttal testimony, the Appraiser testified that he did not use Complainant’s Comparable No. 3, which was on the same street as the subject property, due to “the circumstances surrounding the sale of this property” indicating that the sale “was not a standard market transaction.” (WRT) The Appraiser testified that Complainant’s evidence showed that Comparable No. 3 had sold in August 2014 for $233,000; however, St. Louis County records showed that the property sold again in December 2016 for $455,000. The appraiser concluded that the resale date “very close” to the relevant tax date, January 1, 2017, was a better indicator of the subject property’s value on the tax date. (WRT)
Exhibit 1, the appraisal report, analyzed nine comparable properties, all of which were ranch-style homes situated on similar residential lots within .52 miles or less from the subject property. Comparable Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5 were in Richmond Heights while Comparable Nos. 6, 7, 8, and 9, were in Ladue. All of comparable properties were influenced or affected by their proximity to the highway, similar to the subject property, or to a busy road. (Exhibit 1) The appraisal report acknowledged that the subject property “backs to a heavily travelled section of I-64” and that “a sizable traffic wall . . . runs along the rear of the property.” The appraisal report further acknowledged that the appraiser had experienced “significant traffic noise apparent around the entire exterior of the subject property” at the time of inspection; therefore, the comparable properties were chosen due to their “similar traffic influences.” (Exhibit 1)
The comparable properties sold between June 2014 and April 2017. The sale prices of the comparables ranged from $350,000 to $480,000. After making market-based adjustments for days on market, location with Interstate frontage, condition, basement size and finish, enclosed porch, fireplace, and pool, the adjusted sale prices of the comparables ranged from $370,000 to $413,000. (Exhibit 1) In particular, Comparable Nos. 2 and 3 were situated on the same street as the subject property. Comparable No. 2 sold for $350,000 in November 2015, and was adjusted for three days on the market, condition, square footage, and fireplace count. (Exhibit 1) The adjusted sale price of Comparable No. 2 was $394,500. Comparable No. 3 sold for $477,000 in July 2014, and was adjusted for 29 days on the market, condition, and square footage. (Id.) The adjusted sale price of Comparable No. 3 was $413,000. (Id.) The Appraiser weighted all of the comparables “equally in the sales analysis, with the estimated value being both the median and the mode of the adjusted sales prices.” (Id.)
- Presumption of Correct Assessment Rebutted – Value Established. Complainant’s evidence was not substantial and persuasive to rebut the presumption of correct assessment by the BOE. Respondent presented substantial and persuasive evidence establishing that the TVM of the subject property was $394,000 as of January 1, 2017, which was approximately 5% lower than the BOE’s valuation.
CONCLUSIONS OF LAW AND DECISION
The Commission has jurisdiction to hear this appeal and correct any assessment which is shown to be unlawful, unfair, arbitrary, or capricious, including the application of any abatement. The Hearing Officer shall issue a decision and order affirming, modifying or reversing the determination of the Board of Equalization, and correcting any assessment which is unlawful, unfair, improper, arbitrary, or capricious. Article X, Section 14, Mo. Const. of 1945; Sections 138.430, 138.431, 138.431.4, RSMo.
Basis of Assessment
The Constitution mandates that real property and tangible personal property be assessed at its value or such percentage of its value as may be fixed by law for each class and for each subclass. Article X, Sections 4(a) and 4(b), Mo. Const. of 1945. The constitutional mandate is to find the true value in money for the property under appeal. By statute, real property and tangible personal property are assessed at set percentages of true value in money: residential property at 19%; commercial property at 32%; and agricultural property at 12%. Section 137.115.5 RSMo (2000) as amended.
Investigation by Hearing Officer
In order to investigate appeals filed with the Commission, the Hearing Officer may inquire of the owner of the property or of any other party to the appeal regarding any matter or issue relevant to the valuation, subclassification, or assessment of the property. Section 138.430.2 RSMo (2000) as amended. The Hearing Officer’s decision regarding the assessment or valuation of the property may be based solely upon his inquiry and any evidence presented by the parties or based solely upon evidence presented by the parties. Id.
Complainant’s Burden of Proof
To obtain a reduction in assessed valuation based upon an alleged overvaluation, the Complainant must prove the true value in money of the subject property on the subject tax day. Hermel, Inc., v. State Tax Commission, 564 S.W.2d 888, 897 (Mo. banc 1978). True value in money is defined as the price that the subject property would bring when offered for sale by one willing but not obligated to sell it and bought by one willing or desirous to purchase but not compelled to do so. Rinehart v. Bateman, 363 S.W.3d 357, 365 (Mo. App. W.D. 2012); Cohen v. Bushmeyer, 251 S.W.3d 345, 348 (Mo. App. E.D. 2008); Greene County v. Hermel, Inc., 511 S.W.2d 762, 771 (Mo. 1974). True value in money is defined in terms of value in exchange and not in terms of value in use. Stephen & Stephen Properties, Inc. v. State Tax Commission, 499 S.W.2d 798, 801-803 (Mo. 1973). In sum, true value in money is the fair market value of the subject property on the valuation date. Hermel, Inc., 564 S.W.2d at 897.
A presumption exists that the assessed value fixed by the BOE is correct. Rinehart, 363 S.W.3d at 367; Cohen, 251 S.W.3d at 348; Hermel, Inc., 564 S.W.2d at 895. “Substantial and persuasive controverting evidence is required to rebut the presumption, with the burden of proof resting on the taxpayer.” Cohen, 251 S.W.3d at 348. Substantial evidence can be defined as such relevant evidence that a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion. Cupples Hesse Corp. v. State Tax Commission, 329 S.W.2d 696, 702 (Mo. 1959). Persuasive evidence is evidence that has sufficient weight and probative value to convince the trier of fact. Cupples Hesse Corp., 329 S.W.2d at 702. The persuasiveness of evidence does not depend on the quantity or amount thereof but on its effect in inducing belief. Brooks v. General Motors Assembly Division, 527 S.W.2d 50, 53 (Mo. App. 1975). See also, Westwood Partnership v. Gogarty, 103 S.W.3d 152 (Mo. App. E.D. 2003); Daly v. P. D. George Co., 77 S.W.3d 645 (Mo. App. E.D. 2002); Reeves v. Snider, 115 S.W.3d 375 (Mo. App. S.D. 2003).
There is no presumption that the taxpayer’s opinion is correct. The taxpayer in a Commission appeal still bears the burden of proof. The taxpayer is the moving party seeking affirmative relief. Therefore, the Complainant bears the burden of proving the vital elements of the case, i.e., the assessment was “unlawful, unfair, improper, arbitrary or capricious.” Westwood Partnership, 103 S.W.3d 152 (Mo. App. E.D. 2003); Daly v. P. D. George Co., 77 S.W.3d 645 (Mo. App. E.D. 2002); Reeves v. Snider, 115 S.W.3d 375 (Mo. App. S.D. 2003); Industrial Development Authority of Kansas City v. State Tax Commission of Missouri, 804 S.W.2d 387, 392 (Mo. App. W.D. 1991).
Generally, a property owner, while not an expert, is competent to testify to the reasonable market value of his own land. Cohen, 251 S.W.3d at 348-49; Carmel Energy, Inc. v. Fritter, 827 S.W.2d 780, 783 (Mo. App. W.D. 1992). “However, when an owner’s opinion is based on improper elements or foundation, his opinion loses its probative value.” Carmel Energy, Inc., 827 S.W.2d at 783. A taxpayer does not meet his burden if evidence on any essential element of his case leaves the Commission “in the nebulous twilight of speculation, conjecture and surmise.” See Rossman v. G.G.C. Corp. of Missouri, 596 S.W.2d 469, 471 (Mo. App. E.D. 1980).
Respondent’s Burden of Proof
Respondent, when advocating a value different from that determined by the original valuation or a valuation made by the BOE, must meet the same burden of proof to present substantial and persuasive evidence of the value advocated as required of the Complainant under the principles established by case law. Hermel, Inc., 564 S.W.2d at 895; Cupples-Hesse, 329 S.W.2d at 702; Brooks, 527 S.W.2d at 53.
In this case, Respondent presented substantial and persuasive evidence, the Appraiser’s report and the testimony of the Appraiser, establishing that the TVM of the subject property was $394,000 as of January 1, 2017, $19,600 less (approximately 5% lower) than the BOE’s determination of TVM.
Weight to be Given Evidence
The Hearing Officer is not bound by any single formula, rule, or method in determining true value in money and is free to consider all pertinent facts and estimates and give them such weight as reasonably they may be deemed entitled. The relative weight to be accorded any relevant factor in a particular case is for the Hearing Officer to decide. St. Louis County v. Security Bonhomme, Inc., 558 S.W.2d 655, 659 (Mo. banc 1977); St. Louis County v. STC, 515 S.W.2d 446, 450 (Mo. 1974); Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Company v. STC, 436 S.W.2d 650 (Mo. 1968).
The Hearing Officer, as the trier of fact, may consider the testimony of an expert witness and give it as much weight and credit as deemed necessary when viewed in connection with all other circumstances. Beardsley v. Beardsley, 819 S.W.2d 400, 403 (Mo. App. W.D. 1991). The Hearing Officer, as the trier of fact, is not bound by the opinions of experts but may believe all or none of the expert’s testimony or accept it in part or reject it in part. Exchange Bank of Missouri v. Gerlt, 367 S.W.3d 132, 135-36 (Mo. App. W.D. 2012).
Board Presumption and Computer-Assisted Presumption
There exists a presumption of correct assessment by the BOE – the BOE presumption. In charter counties or the City of St. Louis, there exists by statutory mandate a presumption that the Assessor’s original valuation was made by a computer, computer-assisted method or a computer program – the computer-assisted presumption. These two presumptions operate with regard to the parties in different ways.
The BOE presumption operates in every case to require the taxpayer to present evidence to rebut it. If Respondent is seeking to prove a value different than that set by the BOE, then it also would be applicable to the Respondent.
The computer-assisted presumption is applicable only if (1) the BOE lowered the value of the Assessor and Respondent is seeking to sustain the original assessment and (2) it has not been shown that the Assessor’s valuation was not the result of a computer assisted method. The BOE’s valuation is assumed to be an independent valuation.
In the present appeal, the BOE sustained the initial valuation of Respondent, and both Complainant and Respondent are now seeking to reduce the BOE’s valuation; therefore, the BOE presumption applies to Complainant and Respondent.
Methods of Valuation
Proper methods of valuation and assessment of property are delegated to the Commission. It is within the purview of the Hearing Officer to determine the method of valuation to be adopted in a given case. See, Nance v. STC, 18 S.W.3d 611, 615 (Mo. App. W.D. 2000); Hermel, Inc., 564 S.W.2d at 897; Xerox Corp. v. STC, 529 S.W.2d 413 (Mo. banc 1975). Missouri courts have approved the comparable sales or market approach, the cost approach, and the income approach as recognized methods of arriving at fair market value. St. Joe Minerals Corp. v. STC, 854 S.W.2d 526, 529 (App. E.D. 1993); Aspenhof Corp. v. STC, 789 S.W.2d 867, 869 (App. E.D. 1990); Quincy Soybean Company, Inc., v. Lowe, 773 S.W.2d 503, 504 (App. E.D. 1989), citing Del-Mar Redevelopment Corp v. Associated Garages, Inc., 726 S.W.2d 866, 869 (App. E.D. 1987); and State ex rel. State Highway Comm’n v. Southern Dev. Co., 509 S.W.2d 18, 27 (Mo. 1974).
“For purposes of levying property taxes, the value of real property is typically determined using one or more of three generally accepted approaches.” Snider v. Casino Aztar/Aztar Missouri Gaming Corp., 156 S.W.3d 341, 346 (Mo. banc 2005), citing St. Louis County v. Security Bonhomme, Inc., 558 S.W.2d 655, 659 (Mo. banc 1977). “Each valuation approach is applied with reference to a specific use of the property—its highest and best use.” Snider, 156 S.W.3d at 346-47, citing Aspenhof Corp., 789 S.W.2d at 869. “The method used depends on several variables inherent in the highest and best use of the property in question.” Snider, 156 S.W.3d at 347. “Each method uses its own unique factors to calculate the property’s true value in money.” Id. “The ‘comparable sales approach’ uses prices paid for similar properties in arms-length transactions and adjusts those prices to account for differences between the properties. Id. at 348. “Comparable sales consist of evidence of sales reasonably related in time and distance and involve land comparable in character.” Id. (quotation omitted). “This approach is most appropriate when there is an active market for the type of property at issue such that sufficient data [is] available to make a comparative analysis.” Id.
Implicit in this definition are the consummation of a sale as of a specific date and the passing of title from seller to buyer under conditions whereby:
- Buyer and seller are typically motivated.
- Both parties are well informed and well advised, and both acting in what they consider their own best interests.
- A reasonable time is allowed for exposure in the open market.
- Payment is made in cash or its equivalent.
- Financing, if any, is on terms generally available in the Community at the specified date and typical for the property type in its locale.
- The price represents a normal consideration for the property sold unaffected by special financing amounts and/or terms, services, fees, costs, or credits incurred in the transaction.
Real Estate Appraisal Terminology, Society of Real Estate Appraisers, Revised Edition, 1984; see also, Real Estate Valuation in Litigation, J. D. Eaton, M.A.I., American Institute of Real Estate Appraisers, 1982, pp. 4-5; Property Appraisal and Assessment Administration, International Association of Assessing Officers, 1990, pp. 79-80; Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice, Glossary.
Complainant’s evidence was neither substantial nor persuasive to support an opinion as to the TVM of the subject property as of January 1, 2017. Substantial evidence is that which is relevant, adequate, and reasonably supports a conclusion. Cupples Hesse Corp., 329 S.W.2d at 702. Persuasive evidence is that which causes the trier of fact to believe, more likely than not, the conclusion advocated is the correct conclusion. Id.
Complainant’s Exhibit A resembled the sales comparison method of valuation in that it presented a range of sale prices of comparable properties, $205,000 to $352,500, but the exhibit was not an appraisal report conforming to USPAP and did not make any market-based adjustments to account for similarities and differences between the comparable properties and the subject property. Although Comparable No. 2 was a neighboring property and backed to the highway, it had a dramatically smaller lot and a smaller residence than the subject property. Comparable No. 2 sold in October 2014, more than two years prior to the tax date at issue in this appeal, for $205,000. Comparable No. 3 was across the street from the subject property and did not back to the highway. Comparable No. 3 sold in August 2014 for $223,000 but sold again in 2016, closer in time to the tax date, for $455,000. Comparable No. 4 was a “tear down” lot. Comparable No. 4 sold in October 2016, for $275,000, but the sale was not open market due to its lack of exposure on the market. It sold again, in October 2017, closer in time to the tax date and in an open market sale, for $350,000. The sale prices of valid comparable sales closer in time to the relevant tax date carry more weight than earlier sales and non-market sales.
Importantly, the 2014 sale price of the subject property does not weigh heavily in the determination of the subject property’s TVM on January 1, 2017. The evidence in the record as a whole implied that sale in March 2014 was not an open market sale. Complainant testified that he had been looking for a property in the subject property’s neighborhood; that he had made an offer upon seeing a “coming soon” sign; that he knew the subject property had been a rental property before he purchased it; and that he made a full-price offer and later negotiated $15,000 of seller credits. This evidence leads to the reasonable conclusion that the purchase did not represent a transaction between a typical buyer and seller and that reasonable time was not allowed for exposure in the open market.
Respondent, though not required, presented substantial and persuasive evidence to support his opinion that BOE’s valuation of the subject property was incorrect and that the correct TVM was $394,000 as of January 1, 2017. The Appraiser used the comparable sales approach for determining an opinion of TVM for the subject property. The Appraiser’s report acknowledged the subject property’s proximity to the highway and the sound wall along the rear property line. The Appraiser’s report made market-based dollar adjustments to account for the similarities and differences between the comparables and the subject property. The Appraiser’s report established that the adjusted sale prices of nine comparable properties, including two properties on the same street as the subject property, ranged from $370,000 to $413,000. The appraised value of the subject property fell squarely within this range. (Exhibit 1) Significantly, the subject property’s appraised value was found to be lower than the adjusted sale prices of Respondent’s two comparable properties situated on the same street as the subject property. (Id.)
The TVM for the subject property as determined by the BOE is SET ASIDE. The assessed value for the subject property is $74,860 residential ($394,000 TVM), as of January 1, 2017, and January 1, 2018.
Application for Review
A party may file with the Commission an application for review of this decision within thirty days of the mailing date set forth in the Certificate of Service for this Decision. The application shall contain specific facts or law as grounds upon which it is claimed the decision is erroneous. Said application must be in writing addressed to the State Tax Commission of Missouri, P.O. Box 146, Jefferson City, MO 65102-0146, and a copy of said application must be sent to each person at the address listed below in the certificate of service.
Failure to state specific facts or law upon which the application for review is based will result in summary denial. Section 138.432, RSMo
The Collector of St. Louis County, as well as the collectors of all affected political subdivisions therein, shall continue to hold the disputed taxes pending the possible filing of an Application for Review, unless said taxes have been disbursed pursuant to a court order under the provisions of Section 139.031.8, RSMo.
Any Finding of Fact which is a Conclusion of Law or Decision shall be so deemed. Any Decision which is a Finding of Fact or Conclusion of Law shall be so deemed.
SO ORDERED December 4, 2018.
STATE TAX COMMISSION OF MISSOURI
Amy S. Westermann
Senior Hearing Officer
Certificate of Service
I hereby certify that a copy of the foregoing has been sent electronically or mailed postage prepaid this 4th day of December, 2018, to: Complainants(s) counsel and/or Complainant, the County Assessor and/or Counsel for Respondent and County Collector.
 On the Complaint for Review filed with the STC, Complainants proposed a TVM of $285,000, which was lower than the opinion of TVM Complainant presented at the Evidentiary Hearing.
 Respondent objected to Complainant’s live testimony on the ground that no Written Direct Testimony had been filed pursuant to the deadlines contained in the scheduling order. The Hearing Officer noted the objection reserving a ruling for the Decision and allowed Complainant to testify only to the extent of explaining the specific exhibits being presented, which had been pre-filed without objection, and subject to cross examination. Respondent’s objection to Complainant’s live testimony is hereby overruled.
 Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice.