Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan squeezed in under a deadline today to challenge Provena Covenant Medical Centers July victory in a long and widely watched fight to keep its property tax exemption.
Madigans office mailed notice of appeal to the 4th Judicial District Appellate Court of Illinois.
We are disappointed that state authorities choose to continue to ignore the plain facts and governing law which more than amply supports our position, Lisa Lagger, a spokeswoman for parent Provena Health, said in a written statement. We remain firmly convinced that that judgment is the fair and legally correct one and will be upheld on review.
Illinois Hospital Association President Ken Robbins likewise quickly condemned the development in a written statement, saying Covenant will continue to be harmed by the uncertainty regarding its tax-exempt status.
The 128-bed hospital in Urbana, Ill., has paid nearly $6 million in taxes since losing the exemption in 2002, Lagger said.
Sangamon County Circuit Court Judge Patrick Londrigan in July overturned an opinion against the hospital by the director of the Illinois Department of Revenue. Londrigan ruled that the evidence and applicable law establishes by clear and convincing proof that Covenant and Mokena, Ill.-based Provena Health, met the criteria to be exempt from property taxes as both a charitable and religious organization. -- by Gregg Blesch
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