Santa Clara County, School District Owe 49ers Millions in Tax Refunds

A years-long dispute over the property tax assessment for Levi’s Stadium has yielded a major victory for the San Francisco 49ers that will deal a financial blow to public agencies and the Santa Clara Unified School District in particular.

The Santa Clara County Assessment Appeals Board recently cut the stadium’s assessed value in half, meaning Santa Clara County agencies owe $36 million in refunds this year, plus more than $6 million in lost revenue after that. The bulk of the refunds — $13 million this year plus another $2.5 million in annual revenue — must be paid by the school district. Another $5.3 million will come out of the county’s general fund. 

"We'd rather have that $13 million dollars this year, we'd rather have the $2 and a half million ongoing so we can build on the great things that we're already doing here in the district. Now this will cause us to pause and reevaluate our priorities," Eric Dill, chief business official with the Santa Clara Unified School District, told ABC7 News.

The county says it disagrees with the ruling. On Wednesday, County Assessor Larry Stone released a report outlining how the decision will affect public agencies in Santa Clara.

The county may still appeal the decision.