Adieu to a boost in valuation

By The Mercury

Riley County officials appeared resigned Monday to losing more than $1 million in potential property tax revenues for housing structures at Fort Riley following recent action by the Kansas Legislature.

Legislators sent to Gov. Sam Brownback a law prohibiting Riley and Geary Counties from levying property taxes on the homes, which were built and are owned on post by the Picerne Company.

In the past, county officials have contended that the structures should be taxable just as any other privately owned structure in the county. But they indicated Monday that they had given up the effort in the face of the legislature’s opposition.

“That assumes Gov. Brownback signs the bill, but we assume he will,” said county counselor Clancy Holeman.

A 2009 Attorney General’s Opinion had appeared to give support to the arguments made by the Riley and Geary County Commissions that privately developed properties on post could be taxed.  Based on that judgment, the Riley County Commission had made efforts to collect more than $1 million in property taxes on the properties for the 2011 and 2012 tax years. The measure approved by the Legislature was in response to those efforts.

The measure had passed the House on a vote of 121-2 and passed the Senate 40-0.

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