December 12, 2019

Subdivision owners sue South Thomaston

SOUTH THOMASTON — The owners of the Ballyhac Cove Subdivision filed suit Tuesday against the town in a dispute over taxes. George W. T. Rankine of Arlington, Mass., and Deborah S. Cardinali of South Lebanon brought the action in Knox County Superior Court after both the town and County Commissioners denied appeals for an abatement of taxes.

The owners declared in the suit that the town had been in error in its assessment of real estate by assigning values of the properties involved in excess of fair market value.

The owners sought abatements on eight separate lots, including one 24.17-acre parcel that had not been approved as part of the subdivision. The town assessed the value of the 40-plus acres at $712,700. The owners claimed the properties should be assessed at a fair market value of $271,000. They asked the court to grant an abatement of $441,700.

County Commissioners conducted an appeal hearing on Feb. 5. The board’s written decision in denying the appeal stated that “Even though the town’s valuations appear to be higher than indicated by current market value, the town has not unjustly assessed the property of Cardinali and Rankine. The assessments throughout the town seem to be consistent. If was difficult to find comparable properties to the Cardinali/Rankine subdivision in South Thomaston, as the Cardinali/Rankine property appears to be worth more than other subdivisions in the town.”

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