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Ohio Supreme Court Set to Hear Arguments of Districts Battling Over Property Revenue

The Ohio Supreme Court is scheduled to hear oral arguments on October 6, 2021 in the case of Warrensville Heights City School Dist. Bd. of Educ. v. Beachwood City School Dist. Bd. of Educ. The Court is set to decide a dispute between two districts in an issue that stems from thirty-one years ago.

In 1990, a site for a new corporation headquarters was proposed on land that was located in Cleveland, Ohio in the Warrensville Heights City School District (“Warrensville”) territory and was annexed by the city of Beachwood, Ohio. The Beachwood City School District (“Beachwood”) applied to annex the territory, which Warrensville objected to. The two boards negotiated and approved a proposed settlement at mediation which, in part, involved the split of property tax revenues seventy percent for Warrensville and thirty percent for Beachwood when the property exceeded $22 million dollars in value.

In 2013 when the property reached the $22 million dollar threshold, Warrensville refused to transfer the thirty percent revenue to Beachwood in accordance with the agreement. As such, Beachwood filed suit in 2018.

The trial court granted Warrensville’s motion for summary judgment, finding that there was no approved settlement. The Eight District Court of Appeals reversed the trial court’s determination, finding that no state board approval was needed for the agreement to be valid. The Ohio Supreme Court is set to hear the case next week.

To watch the live stream of the oral arguments, click here. To watch the oral arguments at a later date, click here.

Authors: Matthew John Markling and the McGown & Markling Team.

Note: This blog entry does not constitute – nor does it contain – legal advice. Legal jurisprudence is like the always-changing Midwestern weather. As a result, this single blog entry cannot substitute for consultation with a McGown & Markling attorney. If legal advice is needed with respect to a specific factual situation, please feel free to contact a McGown & Markling attorney.

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