231 P.3d 953 (Ariz.Tax 2010), TX 2009-000536, Hing v. Maricopa County

Docket Nº:TX 2009-000536.
Citation:231 P.3d 953, 224 Ariz. 421
Opinion Judge:DEAN M. FINK, Judge.
Party Name:Robert Ong HING and Alice Y. Hing, his wife v. MARICOPA COUNTY.
Attorney:Stockton and Hing by Gregory Ong Hing, Scottsdale, for plaintiff. Maricopa County Atty. by Jean Weaver Rice, Phoenix, for defendant.
Case Date:May 04, 2010
Court:Tax Court of Arizona
 
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Page 953

231 P.3d 953 (Ariz.Tax 2010)

224 Ariz. 421

Robert Ong HING and Alice Y. Hing, his wife

v.

MARICOPA COUNTY.

No. TX 2009-000536.

Tax Court of Arizona.

May 4, 2010

Page 954

Stockton and Hing by Gregory Ong Hing, Scottsdale, for plaintiff.

Maricopa County Atty. by Jean Weaver Rice, Phoenix, for defendant.

OPINION

DEAN M. FINK, Judge.

The Court has considered Maricopa County's Motion to Dismiss.

Facts

The facts are quickly stated. Plaintiffs own real property in Maricopa County. It is not contested that the county assessor provided timely notice of valuation for tax year 2009 on or before March 1, 2008, and that taxes were levied on the property based on that valuation. Plaintiffs appealed the valuation to this Court on November 25, 2009.

Issue

The only issue is the correct interpretation of A.R.S. § 42-16201(A), which establishes a deadline of December 15 for a direct appeal to the court: does that mean December 15 of the year in which the property is valued (here 2008) or December 15 of the year for which the taxes are levied (here 2009)?

Analysis

A.R.S. § 42-16201(A) does not state explicitly to which December 15 it refers. However, the answer is evident from the overall statutory scheme and from case law. " It is a basic principle of statutory construction that tax statutes relating to the same subject should be read together and construed as a whole." Arizona Dep't of Revenue v. Maricopa County, 120 Ariz. 533, 535, 587 P.2d 252, 254 (1978). The Court must also construe A.R.S. § 42-16201 so as not to leave any other statutory provision inert, trivial or redundant. See, e.g., Airport Properties v. Maricopa County, 195 Ariz. 89, 96, 985 P.2d 574, 581 (App.1999).

A.R.S. § 42-15101(A) requires the county assessor to provide the property owner with notice of the property's assessed full cash value and classification not later than March 1 of each year. A.R.S. § 42-16201(A) permits a " property owner who is dissatisfied with the valuation or classification of the property as determined by the county assessor" to appeal on or before December 15. Reading these two statutes in pari materia, the natural meaning is that the valuation and classification with which the property owner is dissatisfied may be appealed on or before the December 15 immediately following the March 1 on which they...

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