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N.H. Supreme Court Ruling: Church's Parking Profits Are Taxable

The New Hampshire Supreme Court ruled that the town of Durham can tax parking spaces rented for profit by a religious institution.

At issue were 24 parking spots that the St. George’s Episcopal Church in Durham rents to UNH students for 300 dollars a semester.

Churches are generally tax-exempt, but New Hampshire’s highest court ruled the parking spaces are taxable because they were rented to students for “their own private and secular purpose.”

Todd Selig, Town Administrator of Durham, said “this was not in any way an effort on the part of the town to bring in more revenue. It was simply an issue of equity and fairness.”

According to Selig, the church was making roughly 18,000 dollars a year from the rentals. Their new tax bill for those spaces is about 1600 dollars.

Jason Moon is a senior reporter and producer on the Document team. He has created longform narrative podcast series on topics ranging from unsolved murders, to presidential elections, to secret lists of police officers.
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