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Disney To Get Tax Refund After Lawsuit Win Against Property Appraiser

Image: Disney, Wikimedia Commons
Image: Disney, Wikimedia Commons

A lawsuit ruling in favor of Walt Disney Parks and Resorts could result in the theme park operator getting a $1.2 million refund, according to Orange County's property appraiser.

In 2016, Orange County’s property appraiser raised the value of Disney’s Yacht and Beach Club Resort to $336 million dollars - a 118 percent increase from the year before. That meant Disney paid more in taxes that year for Orange County schools.

A judge ruled in favor of Disney this week, saying the county’s methodology was flawed. That means the theme park could get a $1.2 million dollar refund.

"The judge’s decision to reduce the market value in the disputed assessment will result in a refund of over $1.2 million that Orange County Public Schools received in tax dollars from Disney," Singh wrote in a statement.

The county’s appraiser Rick Singh has filed similar cases against other theme park operators in Central Florida. He’s vowing to file for a re-hearing in the case.

A Disney spokesman said they were pleased with the ruling, which confirmed the county’s methodology was “unlawful.” They dispute the notion that the refund will come from Orange County Public Schools, saying it's coming from the Florida Department of Revenue.

“We are pleased with the judge’s ruling, which confirms the property appraiser’s methodology was inappropriate and unconstitutional, and led to an unlawful 118% increase in the assessed value of Disney’s property,” the statement reads.

Editor's note: The story was updated to include additional comments from Disney.

 

 

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