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by Patty Cheffey
The Marion County Commission heard a concern about a not-for-profit being assessed property tax on their building during the regular meeting Monday.
Although the issue was not resolved, the commissioners listened to not only John Lyng, who was representing Hannibal Community and Business Development Inc., the not-for-profit in question, and from Mark Novak, county assessor.
Lyng presented state and federal tax exempt papers on 208 Lyon St., the office of the not-for-profit, noting he had written a letter to Novak about the situation, but had not gotten a reply.
Novak stated he had visited with Lyng since receiving the letter, and said he had been waiting on information from an attorney and the State Tax Commission.
Lyng also noted while the name of the organization had changed a few times, he presented paperwork noting both the state and federal governments were aware of those changes.
According to Novak, the State Tax Commission says there are three prongs not-for-profits must meet in order to have their facility be tax exempt.
First the organization must be regularly used, including directing and maintaining the building; secondly, it must be owned or operated on a non-profit basis; and third it must be the benefit of an indefinite number and people and must be a benefit to the government.
While most non-profits can meet one of those, few meet all three, and Novak said he did not believe this non-profit met the benefit to the government standard.
In discussing the issue, Novak also pointed out several pieces of vacant property under the non-profit, which should never have been exempt and which will not be added back to the tax books.
While Novak was going through the vacant property descriptions with the commissioners, Lyng thanked the county for its time, then walked out without getting a satisfactory response to his question, stating he did not see what the vacant properties had to do with the concern he was presenting to the commissioners.
In other business, the commissioners approved a reimbursement request from the state in the amount of $727.73 for engineering work on the County Rod 402 bridge project.
They also learned a planning and zoning meeting will be held Feb. 10 and Feb. 24 concerning an individual who wants to install a paintball facility in the northern part of the county off Highway 6.
In addition, the commissioners met briefly with Bryan Nichols with Sam Graves’ office, who said he was just checking to see if the commissioners had any questions or concerns.