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”FAST” Fails
by Ron Davis

Attempts have failed to prove that an Illinois-based shopping center incorrectly calculated the amount of property taxes owed.

The shopping center is the Village of West Dundee, and the taxes relate to a business-improvement district at the center. The property owners argue that the tenant (Foreclosed Assets Sales and Transfer Partnership, or “FAST”) claims that property taxes were incorrectly calculated.

Moreover, the complaint includes charges that the Village is responsible for various financial errors. The tenant alleges that the Springhill Gateway defendants, who also own a share of the shopping center, improperly, received the benefits of the business improvement district.

In response, West Dundee authorities asked the courts to dismiss the charges for failure to state a claim based on federal rule of civic procedure. That request was denied, however.

The Village then alleged that a tax assessment was incorrectly based on the potential $2.95 million in bonds, rather than the $1.5 million that was actually issued. The tenant also alleged that “this error has affected the relationship to the section of the shopping centers owned by Springhill. That “error,” added, the Village, devalued that share of the shopping center. As a result of devaluation, the Village claimed a loss of $500,000.

In addition to the tax assessment error, FAST alleges that the Village improperly prevented it from leasing space in each share of the shopping center to the Salvation Army it was “forced” to sell the property for $1,986,750.

FAST also alleges that the Village incorrectly calculated the amount owed the shopping center. Moreover, FAST alleges that the Village had properly compiled certain important calculations.

But the court granted the Village defendants’ motion to dismiss that claim, deciding that a relationship does not require the rational version, such as FAST argues.

FAST had also argued for removal of reference to an improper use of the tax revenue and simply alleges that the Village defendants assessed the wrong amount. FAST alleged that this error devalued this error devalued its former property and made it more difficult to sell.

FAST argues that the court has already recognized the viability of this claim when in its opinion addressing the Village Defendant’s motion to dismiss the third amended complaint. The Court held that FAST had “alleged an injury with respect to the resale value of (a property).

Summing up, the court explained: “FAST’s argument fails to identify a cause of action that would permit the court to grant FAST the relief based on the injury-in-fact it alleges.”

(United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division. Transfer Partnership, Plaintiff village of West Dundee, et al, No. 12 C 6699.)

Decision: February 2017
Published: March 2017



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