Court says property value freeze is legal

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The Vermont Supreme Court has rejected a utility’s complaints about a freeze placed on the property value of hydroelectric dams.

Dam owner U.S. Gen got into a dispute with the town of Rockingham over the value of the dam. Utilities began seeking big reductions in the tax value of power dams after electric deregulation in the 1990s.
The Legislature stepped in and put a three-year freeze on dam values to give time for fair market values to be established and to spare towns a sudden huge reduction in tax revenues.

The Vermont Supreme Court rejected U.S. Gen’s argument that the freeze was unconstitutional.

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