Aluminum Plant Tax Lawsuit Could Cost W.Va. County

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Charleston, W.Va. (AP) -- Jackson County could lose $740,000 in tax revenue if Century Aluminum wins a court case challenging the state tax department's appraisal of its closed plant in Ravenswood.

Century Aluminum closed the plant in 2009. But the company still has to pay property taxes on remaining machinery and equipment.

The Charleston Daily Mail reports that the tax department set the plant's appraised value at $73.1 million.

A petition filed by Century Aluminum in Jackson County Circuit Court claims the department's formula overstated the plant's value.

If Century wins the case, Assessor Brian Thomas says the company's tax bill would be reduced by $740,000. County Commission president Joe Pitts says that would devastate the county school system.

(Copyright 2010 by the Associated Press. All rights reserved.)

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