A reappraisal of the first mixed-use property at the Grandview Yard development potentially could bring a little more money to the Grandview Heights City School District.

A reappraisal of the first mixed-use property at the Grandview Yard development potentially could bring a little more money to the Grandview Heights City School District.

The district contracted with Robert Weiler Co. to perform an independent appraisal of the property at 845 Yard St., which has commercial use on its first floor and apartments on the top three floors.

"We decided to bring in a firm to conduct an appraisal because the Keystone property at 845 was the first mixed-use site at the Yard and we wanted to make sure about how much of the valued is assigned to residential versus commercial," district Treasurer Beth Collier said.

Under the Grandview Yard school-compensation agreement adopted by the district and the city of Grandview Heights in 2009, the district receives the property taxes it would have received if no development had occurred in the form of hold-harmless payments.

The district also receives Payments in Lieu of Taxes, which represent a portion of the property taxes on the increase in value of improved parcels in the Yard.

The taxes paid on the increased value are redirected to the tax-increment financing fund as new development occurs. A TIF is a public financing method used for redevelopment, infrastructure and other community improvements.

The formula for the Grandview Yard Payments in Lieu of Taxes uses the square footage of a property, Collier said.

The district receives 15 percent of taxes based on the total tax rate for residential property and 11 percent for commercial property, she said.

The square footage of the building at 845 Yard St. is shown to be 76 percent residential and 24 percent commercial.

The appraisal completed by Robert Weiler shows the split actually to be 83 percent residential and 17 percent commercial.

"We based those percentages on the updated floor plans presented to us by the developer," said Melissa Dean, senior appraiser and analyst at Robert Weiler. "They came from the floor plans themselves."

If the revised percentages were used, the district would have received $86,309 in 2016 under the compensation agreement, Collier said. That is $17,146 more than the district actually received under the current residential/commercial split.

Grandview schools received $69,163 last year, she said.

The property-tax and TIF collections in any given calendar year are based on the property as of Jan. 1 of the previous year, Collier said.

The school board will be able to decide whether it wants to appeal the current tax-payment formula, Dean said.

"They, like any governmental entity, business or taxpayer, can file an appeal with the Ohio Board of Tax Appeals," she said. "We don't make any recommendation; we forward the information in our appraisal. It's their decision."

Collier presented a report on the revenue the district is receiving from the Yard and the results of the appraisal last month to the Grandview school board.

It's most likely the board will wait until after a revised property-value assessment of 845 Yard St. is completed by the Franklin County auditor, she said.

Robert Weiler's report valued the property at about $16.5 million, compared to the auditor's current assessment of $13.5 million, Collier said.

The auditor's assessment will increase to $15.1 million in 2017, she said. The property still is considered to be unfinished for 2017 and the auditor is expected to increase the value further in 2018.

Many people believe the school district takes in a lot more money than it actually does from the Yard development, Collier said.

"It's the No. 1 question people ask us, especially at levy time: 'Aren't you getting a bunch of money from Grandview Yard?,'" she said. "The answer is no, we're actually not."

Since 2010, the district has received just under $4.1 million, Collier said.

Even that total could be misleading, since about 74 percent of it is in the form of hold-harmless payments, or tax money the district would have received if the Yard was not developed, she said.

"It's only the PILOT money that is truly new money," Collier said.

She said the district has not yet forwarded the appraiser's findings to the city. She said she expects to discuss the appraisal with the city early in the new year.

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