- Associated Press - Wednesday, March 25, 2015

SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) - The assessed value of South Bend’s tallest building has been cut by about 60 percent in recent years.

St. Joseph County Deputy Attorney Frank Agostino told WNDU-TV (https://bit.ly/1NfKjKU ) that Chase Tower’s assessed value for tax purposes was trimmed from $5.9 million to $3 million for 2013. It’s down to $2.4 million for 2014.

The 25-story tower was bought out of foreclosure in March 2014 by a New York-based company for $4.5 million. The building opened in 1971 but is in need of repair.

Details of a settlement resulting in the lower assessed value for the tower were announced Tuesday.

Agostino said the county should be realistic about what businesses can pay in taxes.

“We want to keep South Bend going,” Agostino said. “It’s the 150th anniversary, we want another 150 years, it’s only going to happen if people work together and be realistic as to what businesses could afford.”

The tower’s owner paid more than $500,000 in property taxes last year, though much of that went to back taxes. The tax bill for the building before the appeal was typically around $200,000.

In January, the real estate company that manages Chase Tower asked tenants to move out, citing urgent repairs. The tower’s owner said last year that it planned a $5.8 million upgrade.

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Information from: WNDU-TV, https://www.wndu.com/

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