Hollister Heights Apartments et al v. Chuck Pennel, Assessor Taney County

November 21st, 2014

State Tax Commission of Missouri


Complainant, )
v. )
Respondent. )







Decision of the Taney County Board of Equalization sustaining the assessment made by the previous Assessor is SET ASIDE. Complainant presented substantial and persuasive evidence to rebut the presumption of correct assessment by the Board of Equalization and establish fair market value.

True value in money for the subject property for tax years 2013 and 2014 is set as follows:

13-89526 $561,970
13-89527 $463,760
13-89528 $527,870
13-89529 $534,690


Complainant represented by Attorney, Richard D. Dvorak, Tomes & Dvorak, Overland Park, Kansas.

Respondent represented Pro Se.

Case decided by Hearing Officer Maureen Monaghan.


Complainant appeals, on the ground of overvaluation, the decision of the Taney County Board of Equalization, which sustained the valuation of the subject property. The Commission takes this appeal to determine the true value in money for the subject property on January 1, 2013.  The appeals were heard on October 30, 2014.  Although each appeal was heard separately, the Hearing Officer took notice of testimony from each hearing to apply to the other hearings.  Therefore the evidence was identical in each hearing, all evidence was considered in reaching the decision and therefore one Decision will be entered applying to each parcel.  The Hearing Officer, having considered all of the competent evidence upon the whole record, enters the following Decision and Order.


  1. Jurisdiction. Jurisdiction over this appeal is proper.  Complainant timely appealed to the State Tax Commission from the decision of the Taney County Board of Equalization.
  2. Identification of Subject Property.
13-89526 17-2.0-09-001-003-001-001. 616 Evergreen St. Hollister, MO
13-89527 18-1.0-02-004-012-001.001 407 Judy St, Branson, MO
13-89528 08-9.0-31-004-006-003.000 1450 Herschend, Branson, MO
13-89529 18-1.0-02-004-012-001.002 409 Judy St, Branson, MO


  1. Description of Subject Property. The subject properties consist of a tract of  land improved by apartment buildings.  The Complainant entered into agreements to participate in “515” low-income housing.  Participation in the program provides for low cost loans to the owner in exchange for accepting the rents set by the program administer.  There is no restriction of the sale of the properties.

The properties have the following number of units and approved rents:

APPEAL 1 Bedroom/Rent 2 Bedroom/Rent
13-89526 4 units/$350 20 units/$425
13-89527 4 units/$350 16 units/$455
13-89528 9 units/$345 15 units/$450
13-89529 8 units/$360 16 units/$470


  1. Assessment. The previous Assessor appraised the property and the Board of Equalization sustained the values.
13-89526 $772,018
13-89527 $768,820
13-89528 $765,289
13-89529 $734,143


  1. Complainant’s Evidence. Complainant offered into evidence Exhibits A and B.  Exhibit A consisted of an income valuation worksheet, with supporting documents, including but not limited to income and expense statement, rent rolls, and market information on capitalization rates.   Exhibit A was developed by Jeffery D. McCormick.  Exhibit B was the written direct testimony of Jeffrey D. McCormick. Mr. McCormick is the General Manager, Second Vice President of MACO Management Company, Incorporated (MACO).  He runs the day to day operation of MACO, which manages approximately 450 properties.  MACO manages the subject property.  Mr. McCormick has responsibility relative to the decisions to buy and sell property for the portfolio of MACO.
  2. Sale of 13-89528 Complainant presented the evidence of the sale of the property at 1450 Herschend Lane, Branson, Missouri.  The property sold on January 8, 2014 for $528,000.
  3. No Evidence of New Construction & Improvement. There was no evidence of new construction and improvement from January 1, 2013, to January 1, 2014, therefore the assessed value for 2013 remains the assessed value for 2014.
  4. Presumption of Correct Assessment Rebutted. Complainant’s evidence was substantial and persuasive to rebut the presumption of correct assessment by the previous assessor.
  5. Respondent’s Evidence. Respondent elected to not present any evidence on the issue of the fair market value of Complainant’s property.



The Commission has jurisdiction to hear this appeal and correct any assessment which is shown to be unlawful, unfair, arbitrary or capricious. 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.  The constitutional mandate is to find the true value in money for the property under appeal.  By statute real and tangible personal property is assessed at set percentages of true value in money.

Presumption In Appeal

There is a presumption of validity, good faith and correctness of assessment by the County Board of Equalization. The presumption of correct assessment is rebutted when the taxpayer presents substantial and persuasive evidence to establish that the Board’s valuation is erroneous and what the fair market value should have been placed on the property.

Substantial evidence can be defined as such relevant evidence as a reasonable mind might accept as adequate to support a conclusion. Persuasive evidence is that evidence which has sufficient weight and probative value to convince the trier of fact.  The persuasiveness of evidence does not depend on the quantity or amount thereof but on its effect in inducing belief.

Standard for Valuation

Section 137.115, RSMo, requires that property be assessed based upon its true value in money which is defined as the price a property would bring when offered for sale by one willing or desirous to sell and bought by one who is willing or desirous to purchase but who is not compelled to do so. True value in money is defined in terms of value in exchange and not value in use. It is the fair market value of the subject property on the valuation date.  Market value is the most probable price in terms of money which a property should bring in competitive and open market under all conditions requisite to a fair sale, the buyer and seller, each acting prudently, knowledgeable and assuming the price is not affected by undue stimulus.

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:

  1. Buyer and seller are typically motivated.


  1. Both parties are well informed and well advised, and both acting in what they consider their own best interests.


  1. A reasonable time is allowed for exposure in the open market.


  1. Payment is made in cash or its equivalent.


  1. Financing, if any, is on terms generally available in the Community at the specified date and typical for the property type in its locale.


  1. 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 Proves Value


Complainant presented evidence of value based upon the income approach to value. The Complainant presented actual rents received, “industry standard” as to the vacancy and collection, actual expenses from 2012, and a capitalization rate based upon national data of garden and suburban apartments.  From that information, the witness developed a value and then deducted an amount for personal property.  The witness could not provide support for the deduction.  The information presented was not persuasive.  However, the Complainant also presented the sale of the subject property in appeal 13-89528.  The subject property sold on a date relevant to valuation.  The property sold in January 2014.  The sale price was $528,000 or $31 per square foot (based upon the square footage of all the units).  The property having sold as a market transaction provides substantial and persuasive evidence as to the market values of the properties.  Further, the income information supports the finding of value using the sale of one of the apartments.



The assessed valuation for the subject property as determined by the Assessor and sustained by the Board of Equalization for Taney County for the subject tax day is SET ASIDE.

The assessed value for the subject properties for tax years 2013 and 2014 is set at:

13-89526 $106,775
13-89527 $88,115
13-89528 $100,295
13-89529 $101,590


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. 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.

Disputed Taxes

The Collector of Taney 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 November 21, 2014.



Maureen Monaghan

Hearing Officer


Certificate of Service


I hereby certify that a copy of the foregoing has been mailed postage prepaid on this 21st day of November, 2014, to: Richard Dvorak, 7111 W. 98th Terrace, Suite 140, Overland Park, KS 66212, Attorney for Complainant; Chuck Pennel, Assessor, P.O. Box 612, Forsyth, MO 65653; Donna Neeley, Clerk, P.O. Box 156, Forsyth, MO 65653; Sheila Wyatt, Collector, P.O. Box 278, Forsyth, MO 65653.


Jacklyn Wood

Legal Coordinator