Solar company’s dealings with assessor shady

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Last Monday’s refusal of Placer County Assessor Kristen Spears to answer a question before the Assessment Appeal Board, that is, whether a land lease between Placer County and Solar Power Inc., constitutes a taxable possessory interest, indicates that she is unable or unwilling to make that determination. Spears donated money to Supervisor Kirk Uhler’s campaign. Supervisor Robert Weygandt’s family owns or has options to purchase 52,000 shares of Solar Power Inc., Uhler is a vice president of Solar Power Inc., Uhler and Weygandt voted to appoint her assessor. Who is Spears working for? A possessory interest consists of a taxable assessment of a lease. Home Depot signed a ground lease for 20 years and pays Placer County $180,000 per year. Other private businesses leasing property from the county at the DeWitt campus pay property tax as well. Solar Power Inc. signed a ground lease for $1 per year. The lease is for 10 years. Then, through a non-competitive bid contract awarded to Uhler’s company, an estimated $2.8 million project was built on approximately three acres of county land. It gets worse. It was built without a building permit, 200 yards from the building inspector offices, with no Environmental Impact Study. When a building permit was issued, it named Placer County as the owner-builder, not Uhler’s company. No building permit fees were paid or inspections conducted. No tax bill was issued because Placer County is exempt from taxation. Uhler and Weygandt are on both sides of this contract. Again, who is Spears working for? Chris Beckman Auburn