Supreme Court Hears Escanaba ‘Dark Store’ Case

The Michigan Supreme Court heard arguments Thursday on the dark store issue.

This is the appeal by Menard’s to the case that the City of Escanaba won in appellate court last year.

That court ruled that Michigan Tax Tribunal erred in allowing taxes to be calculated based on a store’s value if it was closed…or “dark”.

Escanaba City Manager Patrick Jordan spoke with the Radio Results Network this afternoon from Lansing, and he says that he is confident that the Supreme Court will side with the city.

“We’re feeling very strong,” Jordan told RRN News. “Our attorney feels we are doing very strong, and we put forth a good argument. Our attorney did a fantastic job. So, I think we’re hopeful. I think it’s going to kind of set a precedent and become a new norm for placing a value on these properties. It should bring stability to all of the municipalities statewide.”

Box stores like Menard’s also point to nearby stores that have already closed as “comparables”, but local communities say that’s unfair because those properties often have deed restrictions on them that do not allow for another large retailer to come in. There’s no word on when the Court decision will be released.