Iowa nursing home chain changes real estate designation

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The nonprofit nursing home chain Care Initiatives — which serves 3,000 residents in 63 nursing homes in Iowa — has requested having its holdings reclassified from commercial to residential properties. This action would cut Care Initiatives' property tax bill in half.

Such a reclassification would cause 20 counties and cities in Iowa to lose almost $620,000 next year, according to local news reports. Thus far, Care Initiatives has appealed 15 rejections to the Iowa Property Assessment Appeal Board, according to the publication Eastern Iowa Government. Two counties have yet to decide if they will attempt to change their status. Affected facilities range in size from 39 to 196 beds and provide a full range of care.

The nursing facilities that have changed their designation say their decision to do so was influenced by an e-mail from the Iowa Department of Revenue. Sent May 9, it said property owned by non-profits and used for human habitation should be classified as residential property, according to Eastern Iowa Government.