The Bradford County Commissioners recently approved a settlement agreement with Panda Power that cut the assessed value of the Liberty Power Plant by almost half.
The Liberty Power Plant is a Panda Power-owned Marcellus gas-fired electricity generating plant in Asylum Township, Bradford County.
Since it is not an unconventional well, it is not subject to an impact fee - but it is subject to property taxes.
The plant originally had an assessed value of $20 million, a figure Bradford County Commissioner Doug McLinko said was "grossly overassessed."
Panda Power appealed that assessment two years ago.
The terms of the settlement agreement, reached on August 22, 2019, established the plant's assessed value at $10,050,000.
The settlement also prevents Panda Power from appealing the assessment for five years.
"We negotiated down to a fair price and they agreed on it. The school district is getting almost $500,000 per year, which is a windfall," Commissioner McLinko said.
The agreed-upon value will generate property tax revenues of nearly $36,000 per year for the township and about $103,000 per year for the county, according to McLinko.
"[The county will benefit financially] through property tax revenues already in place. We don’t need to create more taxes or raise taxes," he said.
Bradford County has not raised property taxes for 15 years, according to Commissioner McLinko.
"Everything that’s already in place generates more revenue for local taxing bodies," he said. "That’s the way it should."
Panda Power operates a sister plant, Patriot Power, in Lycoming County.