Back taxes paid on mall property

KeyBank has paid more than $520,000 associated with a portion of the property.


WALLA WALLA -- The creditor for the redevelopment at the former Blue Mountain Mall property has paid off delinquent taxes and fees at the property, stopping a foreclosure proceeding that would have landed a portion of the property on the auction block.

Walla Walla County Treasurer Gordon Heimbigner said he received a check Wednesday afternoon from KeyBank for more than $520,000 in back property taxes and associated costs for a portion of the property.

The check came via FedEx just a little more than a week after foreclosure proceedings were filed in Walla Walla County Superior Court.

The process is a replay of a similar proceeding last year when operators failed to pay taxes and assessments from a Local Improvement District that had been created more than 20 years ago in conjunction with the mall's original construction.

That portion of the property ran from the eastern property line to Myra Road and from Poplar Street to near the south wall of the former mall. It did not including Shopko, Sears or anything north of those stores.

However, the new proceeding included the remainder of the property. As with last time, KeyBank stepped in.

Heimbigner said the county will keep $523,638.22 for delinquent taxes on the commercial land from 2008 to 2011 and some prior years, too. That amount also includes about $7,700 in the county's costs throughout the process. It included a tax payment for the first part of this year, too, he said.

Vicki Hillhouse can be reached at or 526-8321.


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