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Property tax suit settlement talks

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by Joseph Gresser

ORLEANS — A federal lawsuit could, if successful, upend the way Vermont towns collect overdue property taxes.  The suit was filed in U.S. District Court in Burlington, by Vermont Legal Aid, acting on behalf of Penny Flynn in January.  It argues that when a town sells a piece of property to recover taxes, it must pay its former owner the difference between the taxes owed and the fair market value of the property.

Town and village lawyers have asked to be excused from answering the complaint until the end of April.  They said they are discussing a possible settlement with Ms. Flynn and her lawyers.

At present, properties with overdue taxes are sold by towns for at least the amount of taxes owed….

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