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A Better Partnership
December 30, 2009

COA Opinion: An appeal cannot be taken from the State Tax Commission's decision in a property classification matter

On December 29, 2009, the Court of Appeals published its consolidated' opinion in multiple appeals related to classification of assessable property, Nos. 291579, 291586, 291729, 291730, 291731, 291732, 291733, 291734, and 291907.' In each of these cases, plaintiffs owned assessable parcels of property and challenged the classification of that property to the March board of review.' Then each plaintiff appealed the decision of the March board of review to the State Tax Commission (ƒ''sTCƒ') through filing of a classification complaint petition pursuant to MCL '' 211.34c(6).' The STC upheld the classification in all these cases, and plaintiffs filed complaints in the relevant circuit courts.' The STC moved for summary disposition in each case on the grounds that the circuit courts lacked jurisdiction.' The Court of Appeals found the circuit courts erred in denying summary disposition in these cases.' Specifically, the Court of Appeals found that MCL '' 211.34c(6) "clearly states that an appeal may not be taken from STC's decision in a property classification appeal."' Additionally, the Court of Appeals found that review under the Administrative Procedures Act is inapplicable because the STC review does not constitute a "contested case."' The Court of Appeals also rejected arguments that the right to review exists in the Revised Judicature Act or the Michigan Constitution on the grounds that both provide for the Legislature to exert authority over administrative' review, and here the Legislature decided to exercise that authority by cutting off appellate review to the circuit court.

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