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Union Pacific – Tax Commission dispute results in fewer revenues for jurisdictions

A federal court complaint filed against the Utah State Tax Commission will result in fewer revenues for many governmental bodies throughout the state.
The Utah State Tax Commission, which sets central property tax values in Utah, assessed Union Pacific Railroad Company $1.5 billion for 2018.
Centrally assessed properties are those that cross county lines and include railroads, mines, telecommunication companies, airlines.
Union Pacific disagrees with the Tax Commission assessment and says the value should be at $885 million, about 43 percent of the state total.
A judge has signed an order that allows counties to collect on the undisputed amount until the matter is settled in federal court. The disputed portion will be placed in an escrow account until the complaint is resolved.
“This will have a significant impact on many towns, school districts, counties, and special service districts throughout Utah,” said Tax Commission spokesperson Charlie Roberts.
Those that will receive significantly less property tax during the court dispute include smaller communities with relatively large sections of Union Pacific tracks and properties.
“These include towns like Milford, Stockton, Lyndall, Helper, and several others,” Roberts said.
The Tax Commission has asked all 29 county assessors to notify all impacted taxing entities in their respective counties of the specific financial impacts.
Counties send property tax notices to property owners in late October and early November. Property taxes are due Nov. 30 of each year.

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