By Hanne-Lore M. Gambrell on May 20, 2021
Senate Bill 57, signed by Governor Mike DeWine, and sponsored by Senator Bob Hackett and Nickie Antonio, has put forth several provisions that are aimed to assist residential and commercial property owners affected by the pandemic.
One of the most important provisions of the bill exempts permanent supportive housing from property taxes, while another allows for property tax valuation relief, which most strongly impacts commercial landlords. Another portion of the law plainly codifies that permanent supportive housing providers have been, and are currently exempt from real property tax, pushing back on some recent decisions from the Ohio Board of Tax Appeals that questioned that exemption. The protection has its own pandemic-related angle, incentivizing a supportive housing, a type of housing that has increased potential in reducing homelessness.
The new bill also knits together the permanent supportive housing language with the property tax valuation relief, which came from an amendment from the House of Representatives, effectively passing two bills that didn't make it through last year’s session.
In a comment on this new legislation, Senator Nickie Antonio stated, “Now more than ever, we need to keep our most vulnerable people housed in (permanent supportive housing). ... Without Senate Bill 57, all of the progress that counties across the state have made toward ending homelessness for veterans, infants and children, families, persons with mental illness, and other disability groups would be in jeopardy.”1
The property tax language will allow landlords to request their county board of revision to redo property tax valuations for the year 2020 determined as of October 1, 2020 instead of January 1, 2020, as is normally required. This will grant relief to many commercial property owners who depend on day-to-day business for valuation.
The new law also lifts the restriction limiting property owners to one new valuation request in each three-year valuation cycle. Additionally, Senate Bill 57 permits similar COVID-19-related complaints for tax years 2021 or 2022 to be the second complaint in a three-year interim period, and for the first time, it allows a triple-net tenant in a commercial or industrial property to file a complaint – provided the tenant is obligated to pay all taxes on the property and has the owner’s consent.
The new law goes into effect July 26. Property owners will be required to request a new valuation before Aug. 25 and demonstrate “with particularity” that the property’s value has been reduced because of the pandemic or stay-at-home orders.
How Brouse McDowell Can Help
The attorneys at Brouse McDowell are committed to helping business owners and commercial tenants alike. We will continue to monitor developments related to COVID-19 and how businesses may be impacted now and in the future, and will provide updates as additional information and resources become available. If you have any questions about COVID-19 and the health of your business, or the effect of COVID-19 regulations on your real estate contracts, the attorneys at Brouse McDowell are here to help.
This blog is intended to provide information generally and to identify general legal requirements. It is not intended as a form of, or as a substitute for legal advice. Such advice should always come from in-house or retained counsel. Moreover, if this Blog in any way seems to contradict advice of counsel, counsel's opinion should control over anything written herein. No attorney client relationship is created or implied by this Blog. © 2022 Brouse McDowell. All rights reserved.