State Tax Commission of Missouri
KENNETH & BEVERLY OLLISON,)
v.) Appeal Number 11-77500
PETTIS COUNTY, MISSOURI,)
DECISION AND ORDER
Decision of the Pettis County Board of Equalization sustaining the assessment made by the Assessor is AFFIRMED.True value in money for the subject property for tax years 2011 and 2012 is set at $23,860, residential assessed value of $4,540.Complainant Kenneth Ollison appeared pro se.Respondent appeared in person and by Counsel, Jeff Mittelhauser, Prosecuting Attorney, Pettis County.
Case heard and decided by Senior Hearing Officer W. B. Tichenor.
Complainant appeals, on the ground of overvaluation, the decision of the Pettis 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, 2011.The Hearing Officer, having considered all of the competent evidence upon the whole record, enters the following Decision and Order.
FINDINGS OF FACT
1.Jurisdiction.Jurisdiction over this appeal is proper.Complainant timely appealed to the State Tax Commission from the decision of the Pettis County Board of Equalization.A hearing was conducted on November 1, 2011, at the Pettis County Courthouse, Sedalia, Missouri.
3.Subject Property.The subject property is located at 16463 Dove Rd., Green Ridge, Missouri.The property is identified by map parcel number 19-31-06-0-00-006001.The property consists of 1.25 acres improved by a one and a half story frame style home built in 1915.The property is improved with a well, rural water, septic system and two sheds.
4.Complainant’s Evidence.Mr. Ollison testified on behalf of Complainants.He had no idea of what a willing buyer and seller would have paid for the property as of January 1, 2011.He believed the property value should have stayed at $20,420, the value placed on it for the 2009 – 10 assessment.
The following exhibits were tendered by Mr. Ollison and received into evidence without objection.
Aerial Photograph of the subject property – 11/3/09
Change Notice for subject – 6/6/11
2005 – 08 Tax Bills on Subject
Complainant’s Check Ledger – payments for improvements – 2006
None of the exhibits received on behalf of Complainants provided any evidence relevant to establishing the fair market value of the subject property as of January 1, 2011.
There was evidence of the replacement of a shed during 2011, however there was no other new construction and improvement from January 1, 2011, to the date of hearing.Complainant had no plans for any new construction and improvement prior to January 1, 2012.Any additional value that might be attributable to the replacement of the shed could not be ascertained, therefore the assessed value for 2011 remains the assessed value for 2012.
Complainant’s evidence was not substantial and persuasive to rebut the presumption of correct assessment by the Board and establish the true value in money as of January 1, 2011, to be $20,420, as proposed.See, Complainants’ Fail To Prove Value of $20,420, infra.
5.Respondent’s Evidence.Respondent testified as to his valuation of the subject property for the 2011-12 assessment and as to his preparation of Exhibit 1.Exhibit 1 (appraisal report) was received into evidence.Exhibit 1 and Respondent’s testimony was given in support of the true value in money determined by the Assessor and sustained by the Board of $23,860.
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.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.
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.In an overvaluation appeal, true value in money for the property being appealed must be determined based upon the evidence on the record that is probative on the issue of the fair market value of the property under appeal.
Presumption In Appeals
There is a presumption of validity, good faith and correctness of assessment by the County Board of Equalization.This presumption is a rebuttable rather than a conclusive presumption.It places the burden of going forward with some substantial evidence on the taxpayer – Complainant.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.Complainants failed to meet their burden of proof.The evidence submitted was insufficient to rebut the presumption of correct assessment by the Board.
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.
2.Both parties are well informed and well advised, and both acting in what they consider their own best interests.
3.A reasonable time is allowed for exposure in the open market.
4.Payment is made in cash or its equivalent.
5.Financing, if any, is on terms generally available in the Community at the specified date and typical for the property type in its locale.
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.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.Complainants did not present any evidence of a valuation of the property under appeal by a recognized appraisal methodology.
Complainants’ Fail To Prove Value of $20,420
In order to prevail, Complainants must present an opinion of market value and substantial and persuasive evidence that the proposed value is indicative of the market value of the subject property on January 1, 2011.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.”
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.
Mr. Ollison’s testimony was that he had “no idea” as to the value as of January 1, 2011.He believed he might be able get $25,000 – $30,000 for his property.The main point which the taxpayer made was that his value and hence taxes had increased when he believe home values were decreasing all over the country.
This case illustrates the common error that taxpayers often make when appealing their assessment to the Commission.The homeowner focuses on the value the Assessor placed on the property in the prior assessment cycle and assumes it actually was the market value.That might or might not be the case.In any event, reports of general trends regarding housing, do not establish the value of a single property.They certainly do not establish the value of the property that is the subject of this appeal.Complainants failed to present any evidence relevant to what a willing buyer and seller would have paid for the property on January 1, 2011.Accordingly, they failed to prove that the value of $20,420 was the true value in money on January 1, 2011.The presumption that the Board properly assessed the property being un-rebutted, the value of $23,860 stands.
Respondent had no burden to prove value or to disprove the owner’s opinion of value.A Respondent may always simply rest upon the presumption of correct assessment by the Board.The evidence presented by Respondent was to give support for the Board’s value and in effect was supplemental to the presumption.Since Complainants failed to make a prima facie case for the relief sought, there is no need to present a detailed analysis of the evidence presented by Respondent.
The assessed valuation for the subject property as determined by the Assessor and sustained by the Board of Equalization for Pettis County for the subject tax day is AFFIRMED.
The assessed value for the subject property for tax years 2011 and 2012 is set at $4,540.
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, MO65102-0146, and a copy of said application must be sent to each person at the address listed below in the certificate of service.
The Collector of Pettis County, as well as the collectors of all affected political subdivisions therein, shall hold the disputed taxes pending the possible filing of an Application for Review.If no Application for Review is filed within thirty days of the date of this Decision, the disputed taxes are to be disbursed in accordance with the assessment herein made.
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 29, 2011.
STATE TAX COMMISSION OFMISSOURI
W. B. Tichenor
Senior Hearing Officer
Certificate of Service
I hereby certify that a copy of the foregoing has been mailed postage prepaid on this 29thday of November, 2011, to:Kenneth Ollison, 16463 Dove Road, Green Ridge, MO 65332, Complainant; Jeff Mittelhauser, Prosecuting Attorney, Pettis County Courthouse, 415 S. Ohio, Sedalia, MO 65301, Attorney for Respondent; Dean Dohrman, Assessor, Pettis County Courthouse, 415 S. Ohio, Sedalia, MO 65301; Nick La Strada, Clerk, Pettis County Courthouse, 415 S. Ohio, Sedalia, MO 65301; Robert Leftwich, Collector, Pettis County Courthouse, 415 S. Ohio, Sedalia, MO 65301.
Contact Information for State Tax Commission:
Missouri State Tax Commission
301 W. High Street, Room 840
P.O. Box 146
Jefferson City, MO 65102-0146
 Hermel, Inc. v. STC, 564 S.W.2d 888, 895 (Mo. banc 1978); Chicago, Burlington & Quincy Railroad Co. v. STC, 436 S.W.2d 650, 656 (Mo. 1968); May Department Stores Co. v. STC, 308 S.W.2d 748, 759 (Mo. 1958)
 Daly v. P. D. George Company, et al, 77 S.W.3d 645, 649 (Mo. App E.D. 2002), citing, Equitable Life Assurance Society v. STC, 852 S.W.2d 376, 380 (Mo. App. 1993); citing, Stephen & Stephen Properties, Inc. v. STC, 499 S.W.2d 798, 801-803 (Mo. 1973).
 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.
 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. Div. 2 1974).
 See, 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).Industrial Development Authority of Kansas City v. State Tax Commission of Missouri, 804 S.W.2d 387, 392 (Mo. App. 1991).