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Summit County Notifies Chapel Hill Mall Owner of Intent to Foreclose

photo of front entrance to the mall
Chapel Hill Mall could close if the owners of Chapel Hill Mall fail to pay about $430,000 in current and past-due taxes to Summit County.

Officials in Summit County’s Fiscal Office say the county has started foreclosure proceedings against the owners of Chapel Hill Mall for delinquent taxes and unpaid sewer bills.

The county is preparing to issue a bill in February for the current and past due taxes, said Chief Deputy Fiscal Officer Mike Migden.

“What’s going to be billed, and due and owing, will be $403,418.23,” Migden said. “That includes prior year delinquency from second half 2018 taxes plus first half 2019 taxes and assessments.”

In the meantime, the county has been trying to reach someone representing Chapel Hill Mall, which is owned  by the Kohan Retail Investment Group, to discuss the foreclosure, said Fiscal Office Chief of Staff Jack LaMonica.

“The ball’s in his court,” LaMonica said. “In a perfect world, Chapel Hill Mall Realty Holdings would send us a check for $430,418.23 then all parties are satisfied. That would be our ultimate goal. We’re not in the business of closing down malls or having to relocate shop owners.”

Chapel Hill Mall opened in Akron in 1967.

Michael Kohan of the Kohan Retail Investment Group did not respond to a request for comment.

Chapel Hill is one of 27 distressed malls from Arizona to Pennsylvania the New York-based investment group purchased in the past few years.

An online search of the investment group turns up news stories detailing tax delinquencies and legal disputes.

In Akron last week, a $100,000 payment was made to the city of Akron on an unpaid water bill, about an hour before the mall’s service was scheduled to be turned off.

The Globe Gazette in Northern Iowa reported the investment group spent more than $46 million on distressed malls in 2018, all while owing taxes of at least $177,324 on a mall property it purchased in Mason City, Iowa.

Jennifer Conn joined WKSU in February 2019 as Akron reporter.