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October 11, 2012     Beverly Hills Weekly
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October 11, 2012
 

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briers  briefs m,,,t = tm(lvJ co|e WHAT'S ON YOUR MIND? You can write us at: 140 South Beverly Drive #201 Beverly Hills, CA 90212 You can fax us at: 310.887.0789 email us at: editor@bhweekly.com letters email Surgery center tax rate Them is a great deal of misinformation being circulated in our community relating to the City's decision, a few years ago, to correctly interpret the tax rate that is appli- cable to surgery centers. Contrary to some claims, the City is NOT increasing business taxes on physicians or their medical practices. There is a separate business tax cat- egory for physicians or other professionals. Surgery centers are not Professionals, and no doctors, or any other professional, are being asked to pay the commerci[d leasing business tax rate that should be applicable to surgery centers. Surgery centers are a big business unlike individual medical practices. Specialty Surgery Center of Beverly Hills, which is fighting this reclassification of their tax rate, is in fact operated by a company called Symbion, Inc., which is a public company. In their own SEC filings, they acknowledge that "98 percent of their revenue comes from facilities fees." As such, the City was correct in taxing them at the same rate as other commercial leasing businesses. Physicians who perform medical services at this and other surgery centers bill the patient or the insurer separately for lheir medical servfces. Not only are the taxes on those services not being increased, those physicians who perform their services in Beverly Hills actually pay a much lower tax than their counterparts in Los Angeles. Unlike the physicians whose taxes are not being increased, surgery centers gener- ate millions of dollars in revenue, as in the case of Specialty Surgery Center. As such, surgery centers should be taxed like other similar businesses. Stephen P. Webb Beverly Hills SNAPSHOT f FEAFFON FAAAIL"/FTE gP_..VERL/HILTON Juie an Frank Fenton we honored b V the Beved V Hills Active Aduli- O{b dr ii-s 5piFii-  Givin9 Luncheon & Boutique on Oct. ,. Le 1-o ricjITl-: Leeza Gibbons, 5teven Fenton, Rvan 5milev, denny .Smile V, in( V Fenton, Jut;lie Fenton, Donna Goldstein, W.alie Fenton, Dennis 5amuels, lll V Fenton 5amuels Page 2 Beverly Hills Weekly brief00 Physicians claim surgery center tax reclassification unjust A blend of community medical profes- sionals and residents filled a small confer- ence room in Temple Emanuel Oct. 3 for a town hall meeting to discuss tax reclas- sification on surgery centers. Beverly Hills resident Stella SalTaf, whose husband James Khodabakhsh is a managing partner at Specialty Surgery Center, organized the meeting. She told the audience she was hired by Specialty Surgery Center to provide outreach and educate the community. The meeting came a few weeks prior to art appeal hearing by Specialty Surgery Center in regards to a 2005 audit where City officials found the center was not filing under the appropriate tax classifica- tion and owed $5.5 million in back taxes, penalties and interest. The audit found that part of Specialty Surgery Center's business is profession- al and the other part is renting space for a fee. They needed to register in both classifications C and F, according to Noel Marquis, assistant director of Administrative Services. Typically, surgery centers have filed under Class C, which is intended for pro- fessionals and semi professionals. These businesses are taxed relative to the num- Issue 680 October 11 - October 17, 2012 Beverly Hills Weekly Inc. Founded: October 7, 1999 Published Thursdays Delivered in Beverly Hills, Beverlywood, Los Angeles ISSN#1528-851X www.bhweeldy,com Publisher & CEO Josh E. Gross - Reporter Melanie Anderson Sports Editor Steven Herbert Conb'ibuUng Editor Rudy Cole Advertising Representatives Tiffany Majdipour Saba Ayin.hsazian Chloe Majdipour Legal Advertising Mike Saghian Eiman Marian 140 South Beverly Drive #201 Beverly Hills, CA 90212 3o.esT.O78a phone 310.887,0789 fax CNPA Member editarObhweekly.com All staff can be reached at: first name @bhweeldy.com 1 year subscriptions are available. Sent via US Mail $75 payable in advance Adjudicated as a newspaper of gen- eral circulation for the County of Los Angeles. Case # BS065841 of the Los Angeles Superior Court, on November 30 2000. Unsolicited matedals will not be returned. 02012 Beverly Hills Weekly Inc. OUR DATA SPEAKS VOLUMES