Government Finance and Operations 10/15/2010
California Supreme Court to Review LA County’s Property Tax Administration Fee Case
This week, the California Supreme Court granted review in the
case of City of Alhambra, et al v. County of Los Angeles, et
al. This case involves the appropriate calculation and
allocation of property tax administration fees associated with
the triple flip and Vehicle License Fee (VLF) swap. The County of
Los Angeles, as well as a number of other counties in the state,
asserts that the statute authorizes counties to charge property
tax administration fees in a proportional manner, while counting
the property taxes that are allocated for the triple flip and VLF
swap. Cities, on the other hand, assert that the county is
statutorily precluded from charging fees associated with the flip
and swap. A trial court referee found in favor of the counties
and the Court of Appeal reversed.
Supreme Court review is important in this case, as the outcome will have a significant impact on counties’ ability to recoup costs associated with the complex property tax administration process. A similar case is pending in Fresno County, as well.