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Milwaukee County appeals Fannie, Freddie decision

Milwaukee County’s attorneys filed an appeal Tuesday over a federal judge’s dismissal of a lawsuit over whether Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac are liable for transfer taxes.

The county sued Fannie Mae, formally the Federal National Mortgage Association, and Freddie Mac, formally the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corp., in July 2012 on behalf of the entire state and argued the entities owed taxes for properties they sold.

Fannie and Freddie have argued they are exempt from those taxes because of their government charters.

In Milwaukee County, the taxes are assessed at $3 for every $1,000 a property is worth. John La Fave, the county’s register of deeds, has estimated Milwaukee County could be owed at least $1 million.

United States District Judge Charles Clevert dismissed the lawsuit in July.

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