Illinois hospital regains tax-exempt status

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted Aug. 13, 2007

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Provena Covenant Medical Center in Illinois has regained its property tax exemption after a Springfield, Ill., judge reversed a state decision to deny the exemption.

Sangamon County Judge Patrick Londrigan ruled that the hospital be repaid the $5 million in property taxes it's paid since the state revoked its exemption in 2004. He said the hospital is entitled to the exemption on "charitable and religious grounds."

The hospital lost its exemption after the Illinois Dept. of Revenue said a certain amount of charity care was necessary to retain exempt status. The Illinois Hospital Assn., American Hospital Assn. and Catholic Health Assn. filed complaints on the hospital's behalf.

Revenue department spokesman Mike Klemens said an appeal is likely. "Everyone expects this will go at least to the appellate court and perhaps all the way to the Illinois Supreme Court. This is a serious public policy issue over the interpretation of the Illinois constitution. To be exempt from property taxes, an organization has to be exclusively charitable."

Provena is based in Mokena, Ill. It has hospitals in six towns throughout the state.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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