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Court: Red Bulls must pay $2.8M in property taxes


HARRISON, N.J. (AP) — A New Jersey appeals court says the state’s Major League Soccer franchise must pay the town of Harrison nearly $3 million in property taxes.

The New York Red Bulls have played at Red Bull Arena in Harrison since 2010. During that time, the town has sent the team a tax bill for about $1.5 million for the 2010 tax year and about $1.3 million for 2011.

The team claims in a lawsuit it is exempt from paying taxes under state law, because the property and stadium are devoted to “an essential public purpose.”

Monday’s appellate ruling says that since the team operates the stadium privately for its own economic benefit, it is liable for the taxes.

An attorney representing the team didn’t immediately return a phone message Monday.