NOVEMBER 23, 2015, 9:53 PM LAST UPDATED: TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 24, 2015, 6:42 AM
BY LINDY WASHBURN
STAFF WRITER |
Around North Jersey, more than $700 million worth of property goes untaxed because it is owned by non-profit hospitals. That includes hospital campuses on nearly 90 acres in Ridgewood, Hackensack, Teaneck, Englewood, Paterson and Wayne. And it also includes hospital-related properties, such as portions of medical office buildings in Wayne and Paramus, parking garages in Hackensack and an assortment of lots in Paterson.
That property, and the potential revenue it could produce if it were assessed property taxes, is getting a close look by leaders of the state and local governments after a precedent-setting Tax Court decision and recent settlement in a case between Morristown and the non-profit Morristown Medical Center.
Judge Vito Bianco ruled that non-profit hospitals in the early 21st century are essentially legal fictions, with little in the way they operate to distinguish them from for-profit hospitals — and almost nothing in common with their beginnings as “charitable alms houses.”