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Copyright: Los Cerritos Community Newspaper
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By Randy Economy and Brian Hews
One of the world’s largest oil producers, BP (formerly British Petroleum), received more than $1 billion worth of property tax reductions during the tenure of embattled Los Angeles County Assessor John R. Noguez, Los Cerritos Community Newspaper has learned.
British Petroleum, who owns and oversees a massive operation throughout Los Angeles County, had a major parcel slashed during a two year period between 2009 and 2011. BP Oil was represented by Attorney and Tax Agent Richard Ayoob.
Ayoob and his family have been major political contributors to Noguez political campaigns during his successful run for Los Angeles County Assessor in 2010.
The property listed is Parcel # 7315-006-003 which had a roll value of $1.230, 648,353. It was reduced to $775,565,000, a decline of 36%. The same property had a 2002 Roll Value of $1,219,140,634 and Noguez’ office reduced it down again to $994,168,046, a decline of 18%. It was slashed a third time in the summer of 2011 from $1,091,314,986 to $112,024,675 , an astounding decline of 89%.
“The Assessor’s Office heard the cases argued by Ayoob and had six months to appeal the ruling but decided not to,” one source told Los Cerritos Community Newspaper on the condition of anonymity.
Ayoob refused comment to LCCN on Wednesday. LCCN Publisher Brian Hews also contacted Ayoob via email to get his comments on the over $1 billon reduction in assessed value, but the request went unanswered.
LCCN can also confirm that two of Noguez top lieutenants Mark McNeil, ex-Chief of Major Appraisals and his supervisor Eric Haagenson directed the reduction under Noguez. Noguez is out on a paid leave of absence, and McNeil and Haagenson have been suspended from their taxpayer paid jobs recently.
Ayoob, a native of Southern California, joined the firm of Ajalat, Polley, Ayoob & Matarese in 1981. He became a partner in the firm in 1985.
On his company website he touts that he “represents many of the world’s largest companies including Wal-Mart and Exxon Mobil.”
Ayoob also boasts that he “recently resolved a property tax matter resulting in what we believe is the largest property tax refund in Los Angeles County history.”
Ayoob and his partners are located in Glendale and lists an influential list of clients ranging from BP/AMOCO, EXXON Mobil, the Los Angeles Times, Occidental Petroleum Corporation, to the Walt Disney Company and Warner Brothers Studio.
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