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Judge rules on tax issue

on June 26, 2014 10:30 AM

PITTSBURGH (AP) — A judge has ruled that the city of Pittsburgh can’t issue one bill to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center if it wants to challenge the giant medical system’s tax-exempt status.

Judge R. Stanton Wettick ruled Wednesday that the city can’t legally ignore the existence of UPMC’s subsidiaries.

Pittsburgh’s lawsuit claimed that the hospital network behaves more like a business than a nonprofit and should therefore pay city taxes on its properties and payrolls.

Wettick noted his ruling does not settle whether any of its subsidiaries are charitable organizations, just that the city can’t issue one bill to all of them. UPMC spokesman Paul Wood said they are very pleased with the decision and are prepared to defend the organization’s charitable status if there are further lawsuits.

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