The Lion Brewery on North Pennsylvania Avenue in Wilkes-Barre recently obtained a $410,700 assessment reduction, Luzerne County records show.
The assessment decreased from $1.1 million to $695,000 on the 4.19-acre brewery property.
The county must refund a combined $14,730 in taxes the Lion Brewery paid the last seven years because the company’s assessment challenge was filed at the time of the 2009 countywide reassessment.
The Wilkes-Barre Area School District also must issue a separate refund for those years.
Wilkes-Barre is not impacted because the city never agreed to use county assessed values for city taxation.
The continued settlement of larger commercial appeals — many dating back to the reassessment — has strained county finances. The county spent more than $1.25 million on refunds for commercial cases resolved since 2014.
Properties advance to court-level mediation when the owners contest county assessment appeals board rulings. At mediation, property owners negotiate with county assistant solicitor David Schwager, who requires appraisals.
The county budgeted $750,000 for assessment appeal refunds in 2016.
Refunds also were granted to two other commercial properties in January, according to a posting by county acting Manager C. David Pedri:
• A truck terminal property on Frederick Street, Wilkes-Barre, owned by Arkansas-based Carolina Freight Carriers Corp. was reduced from $861,400 to $595,000, resulting in a total $12,437 refund of county taxes paid from 2008 through 2015.
The property is 4.29 acres.
• The assessment of the Hampton Inn Hazleton in Sugarloaf Township was lowered from $6.1 million to $5.9 million. Property owner M & B Inn Partners of Montoursville will receive a combined county tax refund of $13,841 covering the last eight years. The property is 4.56 acres.
Reach Jennifer Learn-Andes at 570-991-6388 or on Twitter @TLJenLearnAndes.