Jump directly to the Content Jump directly to the content

Property Tax Exemption Does Not Apply to Municipal Special Assessment

Court ruled that the exemption of church property from taxation did not bar cities from requiring churches to share in the costs of public improvements, such as street resurfacing, that directly benefited them

Last Reviewed: March 12, 2021
Key point. Churches are exempt from property or ad valorem taxes in every state, but this exemption does not necessarily apply to special assessments that require landowners to pay for improvements that directly benefit them.

A Minnesota appeals court ruled that a city's imposition of a special assessment on abutting landowners to cover the costs of street resurfacing could be applied to churches.

In 2016, a city imposed a special assessment of $31,191.30 against a church related to a street resurfacing project. The church was informed that it was required to pay off the amount in five annual principal installments beginning in 2017. The church challenged the assessment, claiming that it violated a provision in the state constitution exempting from taxation "public burying grounds, public school houses, public hospitals, academies, colleges, universities, all seminaries of learning, ...

Join now to access this member-only content

Become a Member

Already a member? for full access.

Related Topics:
Posted:
  • August 27, 2018
  • Last Reviewed: March 12, 2021

Related ResourcesVisit Store

Managing Church Facility Use
Managing Church Facility Use
Find insights to equip your church to host members and strangers.
Understanding Church Insurance
Understanding Church Insurance
Understand your church's insurance needs to be assured you have adequate coverage.
20 Finance Questions Churches Ask
20 Finance Questions Churches Ask
Richard Hammar answers relevant tax and finance questions for church leaders.
Planning a Church Building Project
Planning a Church Building Project
Learn about zoning laws, property sales, church construction, financing, and more.