Traer Creek-EXWMT LLC, a Colorado limited liability company, Plaintiff-Appellant,
Eagle County Board of Equalization, Defendant-Appellee.
County District Court No. 15CV30255 Honorable Russell H.
Johnson, Robinson, Neff & Ragonetti, P.C., Dimitri
Adloff, David P. Hutchinson, Denver, Colorado, for
Treu, County Attorney, Christina Hooper, Assistant County
Attorney, Eagle, Colorado, for Defendant-Appellee.
1 Plaintiff, Traer Creek-EXWMT LLC (Traer), appeals the
district court's judgment dismissing its claims against
defendant, Eagle County Board of Equalization (the Board),
for lack of standing. Because we conclude that a mere lessee
of property (such as Traer) does not have standing to
challenge a property tax valuation of property that includes
the leased property, we affirm.
2 This appeal concerns the property tax valuation of Chapel
Square Subdivision Tract B-1 (Tract B) for the tax year 2015.
Tract B is a parcel of land that has a commercial retail
building on it. Tract B has been subject to a lease since
1987, and since 2002 Traer has been the lessee. Under a
"Declaration of Easements, " Traer is contractually
obligated to pay the property taxes "directly to the
appropriate taxing authorities." But since assuming the
lease, Traer has not paid the property taxes directly to the
taxing authority; the owner has made those payments and Traer
has reimbursed the owner.
3 On May 1, 2015, the Eagle County Assessor mailed the owner
a notice of valuation regarding Tract B. Traer (but not the
owner) initiated the statutory protest and adjustment process
to challenge the 2015 valuation of Tract B. The assessor
issued a notice of determination declining to adjust the
4 Traer appealed the notice of determination to the Board.
The Board upheld the valuation.
5 Undaunted, Traer appealed the Board's decision to
district court pursuant to section 39-8-108, C.R.S.
6 The Board moved to dismiss under C.R.C.P. 12(b)(1) on the
theory that a mere lessee does not have standing to challenge
a property tax valuation of the sort issued by the assessor.
The district court agreed and dismissed the case.
7 Traer contends that the district court erred in ruling that
it does not have statutory or common law standing, and that
factual determinations underlying the court's ruling ...