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Shaken All Over? Homeowners at odds with Town

June 28, 2013

Photo: James Bessette The residence of Christopher and Susan Lamendola, located at 50 Sarah’s Trace, is one of three homes in the neighborhood that were allegedly damaged significantly during the construction of the new Cole Middle School, which abuts the property, back in 2011. The Lamendolas, along with other homeowners, are taking legal procedures in two separate cases.

EAST GREENWICH — Six area homeowners who reside on Sarah’s Trace are involved in two separate legal battles with the Town of East Greenwich regarding significant issues to their respective properties.

Christopher and Susan Lamendola, of 50 Sarah’s Trace, Keith and Wendy Amelotte of 35 Sarah’s Trace and Thomas Hogan and Cynthia Peloso of 40 Sarah’s Trace formally filed a petition with Kent County Superior Court against East Greenwich Tax Assessor Janice Peixinho on June 10, alleging their respective properties were illegally assessed as of Dec. 31, 2011 and alleging they weren’t given fair treatment during the appeal process with the East Greenwich Board of Assessors.
According to court documents that were prepared by David E. Maglio of David E. Maglio and Associates, P.C. of Providence – the legal counsel for the petitioners – that were obtained by The Pendulum from an anonymous source, the Lamendolas, the Amelottes Hogan and Peloso have a “statutory right” under Rhode Island General Law 44-5-12 to be “free from local property taxation that is based on assessed valuations which fail to reflect the full and fair cash value of their assessed properties, or uniform percentage of, not to exceed 100 percent.”
The assessed valuations of the petitioners’ properties, according to court documents, were allegedly determined “in substantial part by an appraisal process” conducted by Northeast Revaluation Group, LLC for tax bills issued for 2012. The assessments of the properties in question, the documents allege, that certifications of the tax roll and any levy and/or imposition of real property taxes based on the revaluation work of (Northeast Revaluation Group) are “invalid and unlawful in that they’re based…on flawed assumptions, methodologies and preconceived notions, inaccurate data, arbitrary property condition classifications, inadequate inspection practices and inadequate sales data,” which caused a “substantial over-assessment” of the properties.
According to court documents, the Lamendolas, the Amelottes Hogan and Peloso allegedly filed a “timely application” to the Tax Assessor for abatement of their real property taxes assessed as of Dec. 31, 2011. The documents allege the tax assessor – Peixinho – didn’t render a decision on the appeal, which then gave the petitioners’ 90 days from Jan. 15 to file an appeal to the Tax Board, which was allegedly filed on April 13 as stated in Section 12 of the lawsuit.
During the period of April 15 and May 8, the lawsuit alleges the petitioners’ didn’t receive any notification that their tax appeals to the Tax Board had been scheduled for hearing and their submissions were due on a on a date prior to said hearing. On the morning of May 8, the documents allege that a resident informed the petitioners by another resident that their appeal was on the agenda for the Tax Board meeting that evening.

For the rest of this story, pick up this weeks issue of the East Greenwich Pendulum.

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