THE PROPERTY TAX INDEPENDENCE ACT (HB 76/SB 76) — NOW!

The time for passage of the Property Tax Independence Act has come!

But the leadership in Harrisburg – starting with our Governor – just doesn’t seem to understand how necessary and important the elimination of the outmoded school property tax is to all Pennsylvanians!  This outdated and regressive tax must be replaced with a fairer system whereby all Pennsylvanians share in the burden of paying for our K-12 education and equally share in the benefits of a system that will control educational spending more closely than anything that the current system will allow!  There is more than ample information about the full benefits on this replacement system – The Property Tax Independence Act (HB 76 / SB 76), but the most comprehensive can be found here at http://www.ptcc.us.

The form, below, when submitted will deliver the message that you want this legislation to come to the floor of the House and Senate for full debate and passage and on to the Governor to be signed into law!   It will go to The Office of the Governor,  Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and to the Officers of both the Pennsylvania House(1) and Senate(2).  The subject of the message will be “Free Us From Unsustainable School Property Taxation!”.  All you need to do is fill in the form with your personal information and then click the Submit button!   The personal information is normally considered necessary in order to have your message taken seriously by any government office or official.  The message is the same for everyone, but if you choose to add to it in the text area, you may.  Remember, your message will not be sent until you click on the “SUBMIT” button at the bottom of the form.  By taking this easy step, you will probably be taking the simplest and single most important action possible to ensure that The Property Tax Independence Act gets heard, debated and passed into law!

(1.)  Rep. Samuel Smith, Speaker, Rep. Mike Turzai, Majority Leader and Rep. Frank Dermody, Minority Leader

(2.)  Sen. Jim Cawley, Pres. of the Senate, Sen. Joseph Scarnatti, Pres. Pro Tem., Sen. Dominic Pileggi, Majority Leader and Sen. Jay Costa, Minority Leader

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  1. Never heard of this until now. Don’t support this. I can deduct my entire school tax payment on my Federal Return; thereby getting Uncle Sam to ‘subsidize’ 25% of what I pay. HB76 shifts a portion of that to the PA Sales Tax (the worst regressive tax ever invented by the way), which cannot be deducted on your Federal return. If you itemize your deductions on your Federal return, your overtall tax burden (total of Federal and State) will increase if this is passed. Besides, do you really want Harrisburg to have more say in how your schools are run? More $ means more control.

    • Mr. Groshon, while you’re focusing on the 25% (if you’re truly in a net 25% bracket) of your taxes you think the federal government will pay you seem to be forgetting the 75% (or more) you’ll have to pay. If you’d use the calculator on the website instead of guessing I have to believe you too would be saving money.

    • Nobody, and I mean NOBODY, can create a deduction worth more than the expense itself, unless your tax rate is more than 100%.

      • Joel, they certainly can. It’s called the Standard Deduction.

    • Mr. Groshon, you really need to do your homeowrk and investigate this legislation before making specious comments. The Pennsylvania Independent Fiscal Office analysis of the legislation contained many positive remarks about the bill; here are three that directly address your complaint:

      • Working age homeowners realize a tax cut. The analysis finds that the increase in federal income tax (through lower itemized deductions), state income tax, and sales tax is more than offset by the reduction in property taxes. (Page 21)

      • Retired homeowners realize a significant reduction in taxes. The analysis finds that the property tax reduction easily offsets any increase from the higher sales tax. (Page 21)

      • The elimination of school property taxes increases the disposable income of property taxpayers. The analysis assumes that 70% of the property tax cut goes to individuals. It further assumes that homeowners spend 90% of the increase in disposable income. (Pages 17-18) (This would be an explosive economic stimulus for Pennsylvania.)

    • Chas, Because I am concerned about the millions of retired property owners, who may have spent their entire working years paying off their mortgages only now to be under threat of losing their homes and I realize, IF we don’t get rid of this tax, sooner or later, it may be you or I in the hot seat.
      ….. Even though your local school board has the authority to levy 75-80% of the School Property Tax on property owners, the remaining 20-25% comes from the local earned income tax, state income tax, and other revenue. How the public schools are run is mandated by the state department of education as dictated to by the state legislature, federal department of education, and lobbyists for the state and federal superintendents, teachers, and other associations.
      ……… HB/SB76 calls for an end to your school board’s and government’s authority to seize your home or business property when and if you do not pay the property taxes. HB/SB76 also eliminates the [public] school property tax saving the average Pennsylvania homeowner $300./month ($3,600./yr.).
      The so-called Local Control the school board and school district administration has is regarding how-to spend that $100,000,000. a year property owners and other taxpayers cough up every year. When you don’t pay the tax, your house becomes subject to being seized. Lest we forget [a lesson you learned in the public school history class], America was founded by patriots who refused to pay their taxes.

      • I myself in monroe county pay 750 monthly school taxes.Those who oppose this bill are looking to kill us pa home owners.Think people and get onboard with Mr. Balinger. It is time to really own our homes

      • I agree 100%, this tax is slowly destroying lives and driving people out of their homes. We need to get rid of it

    • Sales Tax IS deductable on Federal returns!

      • Yes and local control is still control. The local school board is a sham. They do what they want and ignore our local voice.

    • I’m retired , raised my children,paid my share ,should not be responsible for educating others children,paying teachers inflated salaries, and generous retirement with healthcare benefits. I cannot itemize , so I think the sales tax would more evenly distribute the this burden and take the financial burden off the property owner. At least those who have children but are not property owners who have not been paying would finally have to start paying.

      • YES, i am in the same situation like you and could use that money for my Grandkids

    • Most of us that are close to retirement can’t afford the high tax’s and will have to leave the state to another state in the country where property tax isn’t so high..Also this could increase home sales and new homes being built…

    • the tax you pay on your home far eceds ther deduction . dont you understand this… if these taxes are nt stopped we aqll can lose our homes at a rat od 2 % to 4 % increase per year your tax here will be 18,000.00 dollars like long island , and rockaways..We all will have to move out…

      • Lorraine, right now the amount of money that I am actually out of pocket for property taxes is 75% of the checks i write, so yes it does ‘far exceed’ but you’re dreaming if you think everyone is going to be helped by this. The concept of HB/SB 74 is overall ‘revenue neutral’, so if you are paying less, who is paying more? Everyone isn’t going to pay less.

    • I have owened my property for two years, that is the mortgage is paid off.
      I had my home built in the year 2000, my tax has increased almost 90%.
      I paid 3000.00 dollars in 2001 now 2013 5500.00 dollars.
      I would save about 4300.00 dollars a year.
      I would be able to keep my home and retire if people like you really understood how this change will effect new home buyers, existing working home owners (HA HA) and retired home owners.
      Please try to understand most people can not afford to keep there homes at these large yearly increases.

    • Mr. Groshon,
      Your statement “I can deduct my entire school tax payment on my Federal Return” is completely wrong because of the word “entire”. One day you will retire and I am curios how are you going to deduct even one cent of your school taxes.

    • That is an idiotic view for not supporting a bill. That is the same as saying you would rather keep paying a mortgage in order to have the ability to deduction your mortgage interest. That is not a wise decision. I would rather have the mortgage gone have that extra income for my retirement savings. With the current status quo your retirement savings is going to continue to pay that forever existing Property School Tax bill, whether you can pay it or not. Your home is the motive to pay it, because if you fail to pay, the house is going away. With the propsed HB/SB 76 your tax is based off your income, which will be far less when you retire. This also keeps schools in check with the OUT OF CONTROL spending and increases. If your school district wants more money they will be need to incourage more economic growth and not higher taxes and fees. But then again, maybe you like the idea of having your home being owned by the state and having the threat of forclosure if you come upon hard times even if your home is no longer owned by the bank.

    • I SUPPORT SB76 AND HOPE FOR ITs EVENTUAL PASSAGE:

      THE PROPERTY TAX DEDUCTION WAS ELIMINATED FOR ME SEVERAL YEARS AGO.

      I am retired and as a retiree I no longer have Pennsylvania State Income Tax and Philadelphia Wage tax to add to other personal expenses to allow me to use the Itemized Deduction to do my Federal Tax Return. Therefore, I can not write off a small portion of the Real Estate Tax I paid.

      I live in Philadelphia and this, year2014, Philly implemented AVI which is a horrendously Unfair Property TAX SYSTEM THAT extremely Unfairly Assesses Property consequenting in HUGE INCREASES IN THE PROPERTY TAX. My property tax is increased from $750.00 to $411,000. My house only cost $34,000 but I live in a Neighborhood that has become Gentrified primarily because of the Mayor’s 10Year Tax Abatement/Exemption that he gives to new homeowners who are of the Rich Elite class, while under AVI, extremely over taxing the moderate income and long term homeowners, like myself;….. to make up for the Taxes Mayor does not collect from the Rich folks he’s “paying” to come live in the City.

      Due to this new Extreme Over Taxation system I am now developing my circumstances to eventually enable me to sell and move to another State; whose Taxing policy is Fair and not Extreme. Where I will not have this Philadelphia monster of a Boogey-Man Taxation; really a Mugging by The Philadelphia Government Department of Taxation. I perceive my house as no longer my HOME instead its commandeered under a Greedy ” Unethical Landlord”, the Philadelphia Real Estate Tax Department, and I’m forced to move out because such avarice actions will continue and increase.

      I ALSO AM NOW SEEING PROPERTY FOR SALE SIGNS IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD AND THEY ARE INCREASING IN NUMBER. PHILLY MAY BECOME DE-POPULATED LIKE DETROIT, WHERE SOME PEOPLE ALSO JUST UP AND ABANDONED THEIR HOMES. DETROIT ALSO HAS EXCESSIVELY HIGH R/E TAXES IN ADDITION TO THE INCREASING CRIME THAT IS PREVALENT IN CITES AND LOW QUALITY OF CITY SERVICES, INCLUDING SCHOOLS. SO EXCESSIVE HIGH R/E TAXES WILL CERTAINLY INFLUENCE PEOPLE TO MOVE.

      SO, I GREATLY SUPPORT SB76 AND THE ABOLISHMENT OF THE PENNSYLVANIA R/E TAX. Also, truly feel that obtaining the revenue for the schools from the sales tax is much more equitable; THEN EVERYONE CONTRIBUTES INSTEAD OF THERE BEING ALLOWANCES FOR CERTAIN CLASSES SUCH, AS LOW INCOME, AND ABATEMENTS/EXEMPTION FOR THE RICH.

      • CORRECT MY ABOVE COMMENT TO READ: MY PROPERTY TAX INCREASED FROM $750.00 TO $5,104.00

    • are you nuts… my taxes have reached 9,000,00 in pa that’s a disgrace.. I had to move 4 times to lower them . and keep my home.. and I have no mortgage.. What are you thinking their are millions of tax deductions.. But these taxes have ruined oa and our Property taxes have runined our property VALUES A home worth 200.000 I bought in 2004 , Value dropped down to 125.000.00 because od the high property tax on it.. No-one here can afford that tax. We are NOT LONG ISLAND NEW YORK.. Get real .

      • I agree with this bill, but Lorraine says some odd things – you moved (incurring realtor fees, transfer taxes etc) to save some money on taxes. Cost more to move than to stay put.
        Also property values fell from 2004 to now not because of property tax but because you bought towards the top of the bubble.

  2. As a senior citizen and paying school taxes for the past 4 decades –I think it’s time for this–perhaps a meeting in the middle so to speak exempting a person before they die or are evicted for non payment .
    This would allow people like Chas to itemize and claim all deductions they can .
    By the time they reach an age of 60 +–they would see that side of it .
    Ron M.

    • You do not have to be 60+ to see a benefit in passign HB/SB 76 and getting rid of the current school tax system. Taking the power away from the few school board members that are always going to vote toward keeping thier jobs over saving a strangers home from foreclosure is a great bill. The burden of funding the schools needs to be taken off of the individual homeowner and put on the elected officials to find ways to promote job growth, which in return create more school revenue. This also keeps the schools in check and encourages them to work within a budget that is manageable instead of just increasing your property school tax and make oyu pay more for thier wasteful spending.

  3. I’d rather have 100% paid through sales and PIC than be able to deduct only 25% through property tax. Not to mention, Harrisburg has to create a budget and spend within it. School districts have been creating a shopping list and raising taxes to buy everything on it…without any input in most cases.

  4. Chas, you are so wrong! Right now maybe you can claim your deduction for propert taxes but be aware that item is currently on the chopping block with President Obama and our Federal Government so don’t put all your eggs in that basket.

    There is no more unfair tax than property tax. It is not fair that 10,000 people in PA lose their homes each year for not being able to carry the tax burden on their properties. An increase in sales tax would allow people to make the choice to spend their money if they wish to on a specific item…not so with property tax…the more you are able to spend the more tax you pay…there could not be a more even distribution of responsibility than that!

    Chas, do you understand that you will never, ever own your home because you will always have the State of PA as a co-owner! Yes, that’s right a co-owner! Because, if you cannot pay your taxes one year the State of PA will be at your door to put your house on the sheriff sale block! That is for the rest of your life my friend…long after you have paid off your mortgage and retired.

    Do you know how much additional sales tax you would have to spend in one year to equal what you pay in property tax? Figure it out! You would be shocked to see your savings each year! Not only that but why should children living in impoverished areas with very little property tax collection have any less of an education than those children living in affluent areas that build Taj Mahal schools and have the best technical equipment available because their parents pay higher property taxes. Yes, I want the State involved to even out the cost of education so that all children have the same opportunities!

    I really think you should go online and do some research before you go negative on something that could be the best thing to happen in this State! There is so much more….

    hp

    • Helen you could not have said it any better..Thank you so much

    • Thank you Helen. We need more people like you to show everyone the “human aspect” of these tax burdens. While others are scared to lose their write off, our children, seniors, and families should be our priority. The only ones who could truly oppose this are greedy business owners who are scared to lose their tax advantages. Don’t they understand that people will have more money to spend on their products and services?

    • Helen, so Obama is going to get rid of the property tax deduction. Yeah, right. Also, not everyone in PA is retired. So you want to increase the sales tax on everyone and state income tax on everyone who is working. Please explain to me how the businesses who no longer pay local school taxes will be paying more. Sure, a little bit of sales tax, but i don’t see anything about an increase in the state business taxes to make up for the HUGE break they will be getting by not paying school taxes.

      • Wow, Chas, we seem to have practically a whole page of comments devoted to responses to your negativity. I can only suggest you go to this link, http://www.ptcc.us/solution.htm, actually learn what the Bill is all about instead of your misconceptions and then utilize the calculator to determine what effect Hb/SB 76 will have on you individually. If you’ll do that I believe we could have a much more reasonable discussion on the matter.

      • Rich, I did the calculator and, yes, according to the calculator, I would save somewhere around $200. It looks like the ‘break-even’ point for the calculator is around $175,000. Please explain a couple of things for me: The people that will save a lot (seniors in particular), who is paying the money they used to pay – people making over $175,000? And the businesses that no longer pay school taxes – are they paying the same because of the increase in the sales tax? And what is the increase in the sales tax ‘base'; taxing clothing and/or food?

      • Chas, the answers to practically all of your questions can be found in the link I sent to you. Regarding who would now be paying the taxes the answer is everyone but it will be based on what they earn and what they spend, not some arbitrary assessed value. Oddly, because of the real estate market the market value of my home has gone up and has gone down but my property taxes have never gone down. Under HB/SB 76 if you earn less or spend less your tax bill is reduced proportionately.

      • Rich, I read the info on the website. I just don’t see how it is revenue neutral when every business that owns property in PA no longer has to pay school real estate taxes and their other taxes don’t go up to make up for it. You can’t shift that large of a tax burden from business to individuals and still reduce individuals school taxes too. I’ll bet the people who wrote the article know who will be paying more but they don’t spend a minute disclosing that. I’m sorry but it looks like ‘pie-in-the-sky’ to me.

    • Great response Helen. HB/SB 76 is a well thought out Bill and deserves the backing it deserves. The more people are educated on this Bill the more individuals that get behind it. Ignorance of the bill is the only thing holding this HB/SB 76 back.

  5. This is so important to go through. There are so many senior citizens who can no longer afford there property taxes that they will lose there homes. So please let this through..thanks

  6. I’m sure Chas is a fine man but why can’t he and others like him see that under our current outdated system we will NEVER own our homes. The state will be lurking and ready to step in and take it away the first time we cannot pay our school taxes. Does he really trust the federal government to look our for out best interest? PLEASE support these bills and make home ownership a reality.

    • I do not trust the federal government. I myself in my own community have watched 2 senior citizens lose their home due to back taxes. They did not have a mortgage but there taxes were so high they could not afford to pay them. They had chosen whether or not they wanted to eat and take their medication or pay their taxes. The seniors income goes up very little every year. It makes me sick to see them work hard all their life to buy a home and then lose it in the end. So please let’s let this pass.

    • Where did i say ‘trust the federal government’?

  7. I’m thinking Chas may be a teacher or union member….

    • Chas is not a teacher or union member. Chas is a home-owing, working stiff in the private sector for over 40 years (so far); all of those years in Pennsylvania I might add. I pay taxes to every level of government there is. You’re dreaming if you think giving control of your local schools to the state is a good idea. And giving them the money is giving them the control. if you think not, you’re dreaming again. Just look at the dysfunction in Harrisburg last week with the transportation bill and liquor privatization bill. You want that in your schools too? HB76 is a break for the senior citizens. I get that and I will be one soon. If you want to do that, make a case for increasing the existing Homestead Rebate.

      • Chas you are a idiot , if you like the current system then pay more. Homestead relief is like gammling relief very little .

        Please open a business and when you have to pay 16,000.00 a year
        For school taxes you can say why !

        HB/SB 76 Gives everybody a choice.

      • HB/SB 76 is not a senior tax break, but a PA citizen tax break. This Bill creates an incentive for the state to create jobs instead of trying to squeeze more and more out of those that are already paying. If you were to actually take a look at the school budget in your district you will start seeing a familiar pattern of school spending consistently going up and up. School Property taxes enable the schools to continue to collect those ever increasing txes via the threat of taking a person’s home. HB/SB 76 requires the schools to find more constructive ways of saving money and keep cost down or pressure the State to create more jobs so more income can come in. There needs to be a way to stop the continual squeeze on the Homeowner and put that pressure on the elected politicians whom are elected to get PA citizens back to work.

      • Of course school spending goes up – teaching is a labor intensive profession and teachers, lime most us, will get cost of living increases (lets say 2%) so unless revenue increases (new businesses in the area etc) there will be a need for some property tax increase.
        I am a private sector worker moving from NC to PA with 3 daughters who will be going to public schools.

        Chas is right that some people will pay less (home owning seniors for example) and others will be paying more since it is revenue neutral. I will save, but others will pay more – spreading the cost around.

  8. Everyone, please let’s stop focusing on the naysayer, Mr. Groshon, and instead expend our energy on the Governor and legislative leaders.

    • Mr Martino,

      Respectfully, it should be ABUNDANTLY CLEAR to all Good Citizens & Taxpayers, that the Governor and Legislatures have NO intent to do anything meaningful to reform school property tax law in Pennsylvania.

      It IS time for local citizens and school boards to take matters into their own hands to change what is not being changed by the REMOTE-CONTROL GOVERNMENT of Harrisburg.

      The School Boards I have had experience with all act like VICTIMS rather than CIVIC LEADERS. Ask them to do something to correct an obvious inequity in the system, and they will one-by-one cite every law they must abide by that prevents them from making any change whatsoever. They focus on the road-blocks and not on the Path to Fairness. I believe there are a number of Paths to Fairness open to those who have the Public Good at heart.

      For example,
      Could each School Board not “gauge” the public’s willingness to spend money on the public school system EVERY year by means of the existing Election System, or Taxing Infrastructure or a public poll? Each taxpayer would be asked at what level they would like to increase, decrease or hold the existing tax rate.

      Simply,
      For Tax Year 2014 which level of tax increase do you endorse (please check one box) : Minus 1%, 0%, 1%, 2%, 3%, Max Allowed By State Law.

      Then it would be up to the governing local School Board to show their true colors. Would they follow the Will of The People, or continue their prolific spending and over-taxation? The People would then make their final decision at the next School Board Election!

      The poll could be implemented in several secure ways:
      1. On each year’s School Tax Bill
      2. On each year’s Per Capita tax bill.
      3. At the voting booth in election years (this might boost voter turnout!)
      4. On each year’s Earned Income Tax Form.

      Mr. Martino, we Citizens must start thinking Outside-the-Box, or we will all be moving to Delaware in short order!

      • Wolfgang, school boards could stop gouging the public immediately and it does nothing to change the onerous school property tax system we live under. And your poll would be pointless considering labor contracts, pension systems, debt service and many other fixed costs are already in effect so voting to have a tax reduction leaves one to wonder how the bills then get paid.

      • Mr. Martino,

        The onerous school tax system we live under in Pa. may, or may not, be changed in good time. But in the meantime I think the school boards elected BY THE PEOPLE, will have to put on their gorilla suits to hold the line on school budgets – no matter what the means or consequences. Sure, go ahead and keep pumping money into pension funds, servicing debts, etc, but take the million or so dollars a year of potential tax increase and take it from the “meat” of the educational system – sports, music lessons, foreign language classes, etc – and keep the scool budget and school taxes equal for the next 5 years to let the taxpayers catch a breath.

  9. I will save $6,500 annually with this new plan – so you can bet your buttocks I am supporting it! And as for Harrisburg having more control – bring it on. Our local school boards have been running amok for too long as it is. Bring some accountability back – and if they don’t straighten out, take the district over!

    • I agree Alan. I would be saving between $700-800 a month on my escrow mortgage payment. That would help my family big time! And yes, our schools have been going downhill so let’s try it. I don’t get why some people are so opposed to change.

    • I love the lack of community. “I will save so it must be good”. I personally will save, but someone else will pay.
      Also it is wrong to say you will save your escrow payment – a portion will be retained to pay of existing debt, your state income tax will go up and your sales tax goes up. You will probably still be a net saver, but not $700 a month!

  10. let’s eliminate property taxes completely especially for seniors on fixed incomes that have a difficult time paying their taxes.Thank you,Dave

    • Something most don’t understand is “fixed income” it is anything but fixed, unless you have a pension. If you’re dependent on your savings to

      generate income it only goes down.

    • Although, I am a Senior on a fixed income that is only a moderate amount of money:

      I DO NOT AGREE that Seniors on fixed income should have their property taxes eliminated. And fortunately SB76 would not do that but instead include seniors in an equitable share in the taxation like everyone else.

      Our American laws provide too many allowances for different so called protected classes of persons while requiring others to pay a lot more; its not equitable and weakens the incentive to work hard and to better yourself when so called low income live better than you, due to Government subsidies and taxation allowances; while your gross income from working or resulting pensions become increasingly less after increased taxes.

  11. Dear Representatives ____ , Senators ____ , and My fellow Pennsylvanians, It took Pennsylvania eighty (80) years to end state ownership of liquor stores.
    To help garner our support, the legislature and governor are throwing more crumbs at the current education funding system, which is over a one hundred and seventy (170) years old.
    Despite their meager efforts, more than thirty-one thousand (31,000) homeowners are right now under threat of having their property seized.
    … Our Republican Majority Lead Pennsylvania legislature and governor’s office have the muscle and power to vote on, pass, and enact HB/SB76, ending the suffering of tens of thousands of their fellow Pennsylvanians and causing an economic surge in our great commonwealth like never seen before!!
    To add even more insult to the suffering, HB/SB76 is a bi-partisan supported bill as dozens of supporters have signed on from both sides of the isle. So, God only knows, why our legislatures do NOT demand HB/SB76 becomes the law immediately.
    …. So, I ask you to read all about HB/SB76 via http://www.ptcc.us/ and then, ask your legislature, why they are standing idly by as your neighbors are losing their homes, businesses, self-respect, life savings, etc. and being forced into bankruptcy. …. http://www.foreclosure.com/state/PA.html?rsp=5106 …. http://www.trfund.com/resource/downloads/policypubs/mortgage-forclosure-filings.pdf …. http://www.poconorecord.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=%2F20130129%2FNEWS%2F301290312

    • WOW, Carol says the State doesn’t own the liquor stores anymore! OOPS! And she says the Republicans have the ‘muscle’ to pass HB/SB76. Yeah, right, just like last week. That muscle was really on display. NOT! Tens of thousands are “suffering”? From failure to pay their school taxes or are you including those who have mortgage issues with their banks? Don’t exaggerate too much now!

  12. To me it is a simple concept:

    If I have paid my primary residence off, I SHOULD NOT be in the position of paying ANYONE, ANYTHING in order to live there. I should own it, NOT be “renting” it from the government

    • Mark, you do own it. But owning a home is a privilege; not a right.

      • I’m sick of paying for others. I’m going Galt, laying people off (permanently) to get to under 50 head count, remaining ones to under 30hrs where possible and moving what they did to Singapore. Selling my big house, putting the proceeds into physical gold and silver, getting a small house in Texas where the taxes are way better and building my retirement house in Uruguay or Belize

      • RIGHT, existing & breathing is a privilege granted by government.
        “From each according to his ability, to each according to his need”
        Karl Marx & ObaMao

      • “I swear by my life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.”
        ― Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged

      • Bye Mark!

      • And good riddance to Marxists. It will be funny when taxes and the social fairness nonsense finally collapse the system, enjoy what you voted for.

      • Have fun watching FOX tonight!

      • Mark is a looney tune for sure.
        You won your house but you pay taxes and utility bills etc. Surely you don`t think all the services Government provides is free? Enjoy your walk in the park and library trip!
        You are not renting it and you are free to sell it and move elsewhere – even beloved Texas (for Fox News people) has property tax. Are they renting?

  13. You might be underestimating the power the Teachers Union has to keep pressure on legislators who are supposed to represent their constituents. It seems to me they have an obligation to property owners before anyone else. We have the most to loose.
    We need to be pressuring our State Representatives and Senators en Mass and don’t let up until we get this passed.

    • From what I understand, it is not the teacher’s union that is opposed to HB/SB 76, it is the accountants and tax lawyers who oppose it. Apparently they have a vested interest in having a complicated tax system with itemized deductions, etc.

  14. It takes 55 percent of my annual Social Security benefit just to pay my property taxes. I’m a veteran and have owned my home for 31 years. How can I survive? When does it stop, when I die?

    • Bob….i hear you…it takes 75 percent of social security… without my roommate, i would NOT be in my home.
      Bob…did you know that veterans are exempt from paying property taxes in Florida and some other states? I know this for sure since my sister remarried her ex husband who is a vietnam vet. They live in Ft Myers, Florida

      • 100% disabled Vets deserve even more, but what about us guys who only pull in 30%? Its commendable that PA gives tax relief to Disabled Vets, but how many 100% disabled vets are there? While this gives relief to some, the majority of us don’t benefit from wartime injury.

  15. My wife and I worked hard to be able to afford to buy (and pay off) three properties. One at the Jersey Shore where we spend a lot if time with our children & 3 beautiful grandchildren; the other two properties are here in PA: one we live in and we bought the other for my mother so she could live on one floor. All three properties are about the same size (3br, 2-1/2 ba), except that the two PA properties are condominiums which means we only own the insides of the buildings and not the commonly owned land or buildings; the NJ property is a single family home. Our property taxes, including school taxes are the highest in the two PA condos compared to the NJ house and unfortunately we can only VOTE in the one where we live! Clearly, the situation is unfair and unequal and we only have a voice in how the taxes are spent in one location.
    Now, I have become disabled and rely solely on Social Security and savings for my income. Our largest expenses are our healthcare (including insurance), food and groceries and property taxes. We cannot afford to continue to subsidize this unfair tax situation and will be forced to sell off our properties and move into a more affordable living arrangements. Without tax reform, we will probably say goodbye to PA (rentals are looking very attractive now, especially in out of state properties). We’d rather stay in PA & continue to help subsidize mom’s retirement (she is so happy here with her sisters & family). For us, as well as other retirees and people who own more than one property, the time is now for school property tax elimination! It is time to ask everyone to pay a fair share, including renters & out of state visitors and tourists.

    • You are bragging that you have 3 properties yet you complain about paying taxes.
      If you are truely disabled, then have Medicare yet you complain about medical bills. Clearly the solution would be to sell 2 properties and live in 1 like most people. Why not then take the proceeds and build a mother in law suite to have her close yet give her independance.

      • You know minnoh, you may be right. I just did my 2012 PA Tax return and was alarmed to see that I owed in taxes for Interest, Dividends and Capital gains. Had I been in NJ, I would have owed Zero taxes, in fact, New Jersey not only taxes my property less than PA, they also provide a greater tax break for retirees, disabled and seniors. Social Security and pensions are non-taxable in both states, however, NJ provides a $20K exemption plus individual exemptions and deductions for medical costs. Which, despite Medicare and Part C & D, I still have more than $22,000 out of pocket costs which is what the capital gains and dividends were used to pay. NJ seems to understand this, but PA could care less. For us the answer is goodbye PA, hello NJ and FL! Clearly, PA could care less about seniors, disabled and low income homeowners and we have to put up with idiots like you who think you have all of the answers. It may be too late and taking too long for us to wait for property tax reform.

      • No , you are wrong, he is not bragging he is telling us he worked hard for those properties, like most of us.
        I am assuming you do not own any ??????

  16. I hate to hear these stories it is happening to so many seniors. This has to pass through

  17. You should live in Allegheny County,in this past year with the
    re-assessment by the way it was a complete MESS.Simple to decide how much your home is worth if you decide to sell it today or in the next 30 years.If this bill is passed it will get rid of the future spending on re-assessment currently 15+ million and millions also in 2000.Guess what ! Allegheny County raised the property taxes because ? HAD to spend 15+ MIllions on a court order reassessment makes no sense.. Let all help make a change.

    For this reason and all the other reasons,by the way do hate the statement ” pay your fair share” I do.There is nothing fair about the current system on a state wide level.

  18. ……… HB/SB76 calls for an end to your school board’s and government’s authority to seize your home or business property when and if you do not pay the property taxes. HB/SB76 also eliminates the [public] school property tax saving the average Pennsylvania homeowner $300./month ($3,600./yr.).

    I am single,facing two yearsof cancer,outrageous medical bills and about to lose my home.if I don’t get a break in my property taxes. Please help. North Pocono School District

  19. You pay your motgage for 20 or 30 years and you think you own your property. You dont. In reality you are really renting it from the county and school district. If you cant pay the rent i.e. property taxes, it is taken from you.

    • What you’ve said is unfortunately so Very true.

      I think America needs another Taxation revolt, especially in Pennsylvania; like happened in their America’s early history, because abuse of the law abiding citizen has really become such a horrible burden; criminals and those who refuse to work and thus avoid taxation – they seem to be the smart ones. Seem to know that “Good Guys Finish Last”….and that’s a terrible disincentive.

      • After paying off your mortgage you do own your home. You have the deed. That is a fact.
        Yes you will pay tax, but that doesn`t tax away your ownership – easily shown by the ability of you to sell YOUR property and move if you so decide to.

  20. Keep spreading the word and maybe Chas and company will get it and if they don’t, they will thank us later when they have more money in their pocket. Government is the problem not the answer! Radical liberalism is a mental disorder.

    • Alan, I am not a radical liberal. You watch too much FOX and are part of the current ‘name calling’ problem that exists in all levels of government and public discourse these days. Too bad. It is so easy to tune you out when you say stuff like that. Have a nice life.

      • Chas, I think you watch too much Rachel Maddow. What % of what the productive make should they be allowed to keep vs how much should be redistributed to the non-productive ? Takers seem to outnumber makers and it is administration policy to make it so permanently. I’m seeing little to no incentive to generate taxable income beyond a certain point, or the incentive to employ more than a few people.

      • Mark, I can’t seem to reply to your comment below, but I don’t watch Rachel Maddow or anyone for that matter. I form my own opinions based on my 60 years of life experience. Do i like paying taxes? No, but if you think for one minute that HB76 will save you money if your working, you’re dreaming. and I would rather give my money to my local government than to the state. Do you think you’ll have more ‘say’ with Harrisburg than your township?

      • Mark – retired homeowners could be consider to be part of the infamous 47% you, Romney and Fox rally against since they pay little or no income tax.
        Chas and I are both private sector workers, so how are we takers? I pay income tax, sales tax and property tax. Gladly since schools, parks and other services are not free.
        I am personally in favor of something like SB/HB76 but since it is revenue neutral someone will pay.

  21. This school tax on property owners is unfair. Home owners are an open checkbook for the school system. All people need to fund the schools not just a select group. This tax is a struggle to pay every year due to rising food, gas and living expenses. Can you imagine home ownership would rise without the school tax. Those on a fixed income could keep their homes instead of worrying how to pay a tax when their children have graduated years ago. The only groups against this are business owners and lawyers. At least the business owners can recoup the increase in sales tax we home owners do not have that option.

    • Sharon, please tell me who isn’t paying for the schools. Are you talking about people in apartments because, if you are, that is not true. A portion of their rent goes to the landlord’s payment of the school taxes on the apartment complex.

  22. The concept is simple. I detest the sales tax, but the current system of a sales tax for consumers, and property tax for those who chose to own their own home, is patently unfair. Some will say, “but wait, even if a person rents, their landlord pays property tax”. Really? The biggest landlord in Philadelphia, for example, is the Housing Authority. What do they put into the pot? This is why folks in that area who own a home are paying 10-13 grand a year in property tax.

    Education of our children is crucial, and a decent wage for teachers perhaps even moreso; that’s how we attract the best and the brightest teachers. This is, after all, a Commonwealth, and a common wealth, derived from all consumers is the only equitable solution. To lose my home to the Sheriff, while others sit back and laugh at my efforts to be a responsible homeowner and taxpayer is an abomination. The time is now, right now, to spread the burden amongst all Pennsylvanians.

    • I agree with all you say…and yes our veterans deserve so much more.
      As i remarked in my earlier post…my brother-in-law is a vietnam vet. What I didn’t tell you is that he lost an eye in vietnam and has never been compensated for it until last year!
      Thank you for serving John.

      • Why do our veterans deserve more – they choose to fight and they got paid. Remember they are public sector workers that many Conservatives like to rally against!

    • Well done , Very well ….
      Lets spread to word
      Thank you

  23. Minnoh:
    The wheels turn slowly at the VA. I finally got a 30% disability rating after fussing with the VA since 1974 when I was injured on active duty. So far as my service, it was quite unremarkable, and heroics never entered the equation. Probably why I stayed for 20 :)

  24. They can take your house away if you can’t pay your property tax and some of us retird people don’t male enough to itemize.

    • SO VERY TRUE!

      My income versus expenses is not enough as a retiree to itemize so I get no deduction for the extremely high R/E tax that for year 2014 is so hugely and unfairly increased to an unaffordable level AND PREVIOUSLY I THOUGHT THAT IN MY RETIREMENT I HAD FINALLY REACHED AN ECONOMIC POINT TO BE ABLE TO DEPEND ON MY HOME FOR MY FINANCIAL SAFETY. INSTEAD I HAVE THE PHILADELPHIA REAL ESTATE TAXATION SYSTEM MUGGING ME LIKE A THIEF ON THE STREET.

      BECAUSE PHILADELPHIA R/E TAX AUTHORITY IS THE GOVERNMENT; NOTHING I CAN DO EXCEPT MOVE AND THATs A LOT TO CONSIDER WHEN YOU ARE OLD.

  25. My note added to the message is as follows:

    It is time GOVERNMENT realizes that the average US citizen is TAXED OUT!!!

    Do you recall what started the Revolutionary War? There it was ONLY a tax on Tea! Tea is an option one can do without if unable to afford it.

    You are backing us into a corner, and we are about to come out FIGHTING! “Do you want that on your legacy?”

    This IS NOT a threat, BUT it is a warning! The problem with you legislators is that the Vast Majority of you are so DAMNED wealthy, that you have no idea how the majority of PA citizens live!

    • Nice very nice , I like that

    • SO VERY TRUE!!!!

  26. Just imagine the extra money you would have to spend if it wasn’t for property taxes.You could spend it any way you like, instead of giving it to the local government to spend the way they see fit. In most cases wasted! People would have thousands of dollars a year extra to spend,wouldn’t this also help out local economies?I know I could afford to buy a really nice car if it wasn’t for property taxes

    • Wasted? Over 70% of the school expenditure is on teachers. DO you think they should be paid less, or have much bigger class sizes.
      If you don`t then stop saying things like wasted money. Sure some is wasted, as in any enterprise or household. But when you have a workforce that gets paid how do you make massive cuts without reducing the quality of the education.

  27. I agree completely that this tax must be eliminated. I own my own house and have worked very hard over the past 15 years aquiring and renovating rental properties. I have mortgages on all my rental properies and after I pay taxes, mortgage payments and insurance, I am happy if I break even every year. My goal is to have the properties paid off when I reach retirement. I have worked a full time job while working to renovate the rentals. I basically work 7 days a week. I have rented to section 8 clients in the past, and most of them pay very little towards the rent plus get help with thier utilities, food, etc. I can’t tell you how many times I would be painting the porch or some other maintenance while they are enjoying a football game or something else because they do not have to work because they have everything given to them. Why penalize me for working hard to try and have something for my retirement. An increased sales tax would be fairer to all. Even those who are on the entitlement programs make purchases.

    • Sorry Mark, in this country we now tax industriousness and hard work, and we reward laziness and irresponsibility – It’s the New American Way.

      The chief reason we have these problems – the public school system and welfare system are just two examples – is that one government entity or another has their hand right in your pocket and can extract freely whatever they see fit for the “general good”.

      We do not need Property/School Tax Reform so much as we need Tax Reform in general. If this were truly a Land Of the People, By the People and For the People, our Bill of Rights would contain an aammendment forbidding Excessive Taxation of Citizens. There would be a hard limit (10%, 20%, 30%, etc) on which the sum total of all government entities (fed, state, local ) could tax an individual.

      What do you think that number is? I think its around 10-15%. At what point ( say 40% 50% or above) does taxation become a Human Rights Issue. Afterall, if any government entity is taking a percentage of your work everytime you lift a hand to swing a hammer, or paint a porch, are you not a partial slave to that entity?

      On the other end of the economic spectrum, is it too much to ask that every able-bodied adult (18-65) pay some substantial amount to the “General Good” as well. If not in the form of money, then in labor? If you are paying 30% of your income for taxes, is it not fair that the indigent pay 30% of the work week (40 x 30%=12hours) doing something productive for the General Good – like mowing a park, or cleaning streets, or collecting garbage, or repairing roads, driving a school bus, working a the Welfare Office, etc?

      • EXACTLY right, Wolfgang

      • Thanks, Mark.

        Sometimes I wonder why we even bother to teach history in school. Most people seem to think it’s some sort of fiction that doesn’t apply to them, or happened in a motion picture, and has nothing to do with how we all ended up in the world we live in today.

      • I TOTALLY AGREE!!!

        America absolutely creates an Incentive for people NOT TO WORK and NOT TO SEEK TO BETTER THEIR INCOME because: of increased taxation and certain Government allowances and subsidies to the so called low income which are worth more than money to the low income recipient who would forfeit if their income increases. SO WHY WORK!!!

        Many low income people are very able bodied persons and would greatly contribute to our society, our economy and the power of our Country if they were required to work to feed and shelter themselves irregardless of their excuses. I say excuses because many people will not take employment for fear of losing their very rich allowances and subsidies.

        AND CERTAINLY I DON’T BLAME THEM. WHY WORK!!!
        The government produces this attitude and lifestyle, it really is not the fault of the person, IMO

  28. First you say I maybe right, then you can me an idiot. LOL
    OK , so you now say you are leaving the Pa home….so, I guess I not an idiot as I suggested you give up a home or two. Just have common sense. “Live below your means within your needs” and you’ll be fine.

    • my husband and I live within our means. We own only 1 home, pay our mortgage, bills, etc….and just barely make it. We both have fulltime jobs and only one child to support thank goodness. If we had another child I think we would be renting a home like many other Pennsylvanians because the school tax is just too much on our budget. Eliminating the School Property Tax would give us a chance to get ahead, even just a little bit….our child still has a few more years before college. GET RID OF THE SCHOOL PROPERTY TAX WHILE ALOT OF US STILL HAVE OUR SANITY

  29. Why is it that the only people that pay for educating the children of Pennsylvania is the property owner when most of the children come from welfare families that don’t own any property. I believe if you have children you should have to pay to put them in school. Don’t expect the property owner to educate your kids or you. Maybe they would be more careful when and who you mess around with. Gee it might make you more responsible.

    • David, if people are on welfare, what do you want them to pay? Where is going to come from? personally, I don’t mind paying in the hopes that an education will help that child break the cycle of welfare and be able to support themselves. It doesn’t happen overnight. Also, are businesses not paying school taxes too? Businesses like restaurants, supermarkets, department stores, gas stations, etc. Oh wait, the State Stores don’t pay. You would be right about that!

      • Chas;

        David has a valid point. He stated it loosely by using welfare recipients but I understand him to mean low to very low income families whose income is barely taxed for school and other public services. Whereas, It is the independent working class person or entrepreneur (especially middle income) whom the Government taxes a lot and gives no subsidy support to, especially when they own property and are forced to pay high taxes.

        SB76 would spread the R/E taxation to the so called low income to pay their equitable share and for public services including schools that they use.

      • Danielle – so called low income. What do you mean? Are they lying or enjoying living on $14000 a year (minimum wage for a 40 hour week). No-one really wants to be poor. I personally make around $100K in a private sector job but those on lower incomes will always be with us, even if they put in long hours doing jobs I wouldn`t want to do (serve at McDonalds for example).
        As for those on medicare or VA benefits enjoy your Government services that are paid for by people like me. What goes around comes around.

  30. Property taxes are killing me. i retired 8 years ago with great health care benefits. This year after 39 years, I was notified on 12/31/12 that starting 1/1/13, my health care costs are going to cost me. Between having to pay a monthly bill for my health care, (not counting medicare)my benefits have actually gone down. My co-pays have gone up, my medicine costs have increased. My healthcare increase for 2013 is over $2000. I called my former employer and questioned them and they told me that this is all a direct result of Obamacare. If I have to have an increase in cost to me, because my former employer has to recoup an increase in cost, then the public workers can have a increase in cost to them, i.e., a reduction in their benefits. My income didn’t go up. My healthcare and my property taxes did. The only difference between what the school district is doing with property taxes and armed robbery is the gun.
    Don’t forget that Pennsylvanian’s are not the only one to pay sales taxes. We have a lot of people going through the state and we have tourists and vacationer’s.
    As far as Casino’s are concerned, if anyone wants to donate part of their money to the taxpayers via their losings, let them. Not my turn to watch how anyone wants to spend THEIR money.
    Call your State Reps. local office and demand that they pass HB76. This has to be done this year, not in 10 years.
    Don;t forget to call the Governor.

    • Terry,

      At what age would you say it is simply immoral to ask a citizen to pay to educate other peoples’ children? 65, 70, 75, 80, 85…105? Next time you talk to one of your School Board members, ask him/her this question. See what kind of a verbal tap dance you get as an answer.

      • Someone paid for your kids to be educated. So what goes around come around.

  31. Just this week I received two newsletters from state reps stating that they increased school funding and passed a balanced budget – BUT – my local school districts both passed school property tax INCREASES on top of the higher state funding. We really need to pass HB/SB 76 ASAP, please?

  32. I’ve been fairly quietly following the commentary, and I just saw this comment addressed to “Sharon” Sharon, please tell me who isn’t paying for the schools. Are you talking about people in apartments because, if you are, that is not true. A portion of their rent goes to the landlord’s payment of the school taxes on the apartment complex.

    May I respond? The largest landlord in the Commonwealth is the Philadelphia Housing Authority. Following fast on its heels is the City of Pittsburgh. Does anyone wish to hazard a guess on how much property tax Philadelphia and Pittsburgh public housing contributes to our children’s education? HB 76 will put the burden on consumers, not those of us who busted our ass to buy a home.

    • John, please tell me who is going to pay more if you pay less. We’re all ‘consumers’. Are there consumers out there that aren’t paying taxes? The people living in public housing are already paying sales taxes. Do you think the extra 1% sales tax on those people is going to be enough to reduce you’re school property tax to zero? Tax reform is a great idea but it isn’t one sided. If you pay less, someone else pays more. This plan is a little unclear on the ‘who pays more’.

  33. Everybody it’s a tax system that needs fixed,myself personally I have no children in the school district.So why should I need to support the football fields and everything else that cost us the taxpayers besides education.All these new high schools are built like they are college campus.

    We don’t fund our private schools,catholic schools,college or trade schools.HB76/SB76 will support the catholic schools so parents would have
    a choice and would not have to pay additional if they don’t like there school or simply want there child to attend another school.It’s not fair to say they can effort it or there rich not in this example my friend ,he and his wife choose to send there daughter to a catholic school.The Penn Hills School wasn’t a place they wanted to send there daughter.Over the years the legislation was suppose to have a relief bill to fund some of
    there property tax money they are paying to Penn Hills NEVER HAPPENED.

    Here in Allegheny County it cost the taxpayers 11+ Million to do a reassessment which really didn’t change anything.It did allow most or all of the school districts ” by LAW ” to take there 5% windfall
    When was the last time you got 5 % pay increase !

    Also the dollars the property owners have to spend to fight there new assessed values myself included over the years I’ve spent $2000.00 dollars. Washington County is now started to spend there taxpayers money to reassess there county due too, you guess the schools districts.To me it’s NEVER going to change if we keep funding the schools by property taxes.Everybody remember we can only force a change,if not don’t complain when you school taxes cost more and more and more.Currently I pay $4,250.00 a year /per month $355.00 don’t pay lean,by the way they leaned my new built house on a property tax called ” interim tax ” that’s call greed in my mind.

  34. I am a property and business(restaurant) owner and currently pay 20K in school taxes, I appreciate it is part of our civic duty as americans to help educate the next generation. I work hard and can currently afford and try not too gripe about paying all the different taxes because i know i’m lucky to live in a country that allows me to work hard and succeed. I have not nor will i ever have a child in Pa schools meanwhile my neighor a renter that moved from a different state mainly to get better schooling for his 4 kids pays no school tax. I realize his landlord probably passes most of the cost on to him but still does this seem fair? I really don’t mind paying my fair share but why should i be taxed on my business property for school taxes? i’m fairly certain my business hasn’t and most likely won’t have any children in the schools. I am researching this because my best employee told me yesterday that she is moving out of state she has owned her home for 28 years and cannot afford the school taxes anymore. Her husband and herself both work have never had children and are good poeple that do charity work and care about their city and country. They planned for thier future and saved but 12 years back they put a high dollar housing development in thier neighorhood and they filled the school board with members that had too have the biggest and the best of everything. For years the school tax has increased at the max rate until they can no longer afford to pay it, Is that fair? I mentioned above that i own a restaurant because i would surely love too see some of the tourists pick up a little of our tax burden, I don’t mind collecting it and giving it too the state and if the local homeowners have a little extra money it couldn’t hurt the local economy.

    • Rockjon,

      Be careful when somebody uses the four letter F-words ( F-A-I-R & F-R-E-E ) to take your money from you, especially politicians and public officials, like Public School Board Members & Free Public School Administrators.

      “Fair” as in “Fair Share” and “Free” as in “Free Education”.

      “Fair Share” is in the eye of the person who gets to define it. “Free” is always a one-sided deal – what’s free for one person was paid for by someone else, often against their will.

      What I am waiting to see in our Land of the Free and Home of the Brave is a Free Election in which We The People get to define what We believe is a “Fair Share”. Rockjon, what would you say would be a maximium percentage of your yearly income you should give up in-total to ALL governments ( Fed, state, county, local )? 10%, 20%, 30%, 40%, 50%, 60%, 70%, 80%, 90%, 100%, 110% ? I honestly believe there are some politicians who think it should be the latter (110%). Where would you draw the line?

      • We had a free and fair election in 2008 and 2012. You were free to vote and the votes were counted. You may not like the result but that doesn`t make it wrong.

  35. On this 4th of July 2013 let us all offer a prayer of thanks that we are free from British Domination and another to hope we will soon be free from Public School System Domination.

    • I would like us to pray to be free from stupidity!

  36. I don`t understand why this bill will not pass. I feel this is a good thing this way everybody will pay taxes not just property owner. I know one thing everybody I know is for this bill and if doesn`t get pass there going to be a alot of Goverment people looking outside in. Wonder why they didn`t get the votes to win. L.Ludy 09/03/2013

  37. I feel strongly that everyone should have a voice in this decision to support..I support it for my own reasons and those comments against it are just another ones opinion.

  38. I found over the years, that people will not accept change no matter what. They are afraid, scared, paranoid that changing the status quo is NOT good. They are comfortable getting fleeced by the politicans and the school boards. Unions would certainly not accept this change because they will lose the power of fleecing the taxpayers beyond a reasonable cost of living rate!!!. I like change and always will embrace the new thinking!

  39. Those same union members that you like to blister own homes, and some have even asked for binding arbitration (Shaler’s teachers). Don’t be so sure unions are not on board with this.

  40. I actually read all of the replies and I can see why nothing gets accomplished
    In Pennsylvania. There is a lot of miss information out there.

    My feeling on HB76 , SB76 , school taxes , the PA assembly , School unions
    And local school boards and government in general are as follows:

    Politicians are basically whores at heart. Even the best of them are always
    Concerned about getting re-elected , not rocking the boat , and for the
    Most part passing legislation which for the most part is innocuous, not
    Really solving any issues because to solve issues , you need to have
    Vision, and you need to rock the boat a little. Just one example.
    The city of Harrisburg was raped by the x-mayor, his political cronies and
    A flotilla of lawyers, and financial experts. Yet, the governor is not
    Asking the Attorney General of PA to pursue indictments because some of
    Those indictments may be far too close to home. What our governor
    Is doing is selling off the assets of the city to pay the creditors who
    In many instances probably were either in bed with these people, or at
    The very least, suspected something illegal was transpiring. Yet,
    They said nothing.

    People who are 65 and older should not pay property taxes. They have
    Done their part for God and country for the majority of their lives.

    The overwhelming majority of home owners do not have children in
    School but this state continues to rape the tax payers – especially
    The elderly – for the benefit of the few. Schools should be funded
    At the state level and the unions should be dissolved and replace with
    An independent review board who rates schools and teachers on
    A yearly basis. Obviously, there are differences between a school
    In Montgomery county and inner city Philadelphia and those should
    Be taken into consideration.

    When I went to grade school and high school in Philadelphia, there were
    40, 50 and even 60 people in a class. The teacher taught – nothing else.
    We should return to those days and eliminate many of the teachers,
    And their associated benefits. I myself have worked in IT (Information
    Technology) for almost 47 years , so you can probably guess my age.

    The teachers will never agree to HB76 or SB76 because they loose
    Control, and their cronies at the local school district and the taxing
    Authorities would need to find a new profession.

    Diogenes from Greek legend would find it very difficult finding
    And honest man in Harrisburg, local school boards , and
    The teachers unions. In the end , we the tax payer will always
    Receive the short end of the stick. Possibly everyone who
    Does not have children in school should just refuse to pay their
    Property taxes until some fair, equitable , permanent ,
    Full funded legislation is passed.

    • It seems to me that the only way to survive Unfair R/E taxation and also still have at least a relatively happy life is to move out of Philadelphia and thereby away from their new Unfair extremely high R/E Taxation system called AVI.

      Move out and become a renter in a different State.
      As long as you own property, trying to be that Ideal American, you just get kicked around and extremely abused by the Government. Actually, people who refuse to really work or make good income are smarter than the rest of us; they figured it out long ago that the Government are just Shysters and the only way to outwit them and have a life is to not be “the good tax paying citizen” instead, be amongst the so called low income and shiftless persons; have the government support you with subsidies and other allowances and Very little taxation and in some cases NO TAXATION.

      Seems Government likes to increase the low income population, and shiftless population; these people increase the employment of bureaucrats to run the programs, making bureaucrats wealthy and often the low income people will not partake in the Voting process or other actions to protest how the Government is running the Country, unless their benefits would be decreased. SO GOVERNMENT GETS A MUCH FREER HAND WITH MORE AMERICANS BEING LOW INCOME AND ON SUBSIDY and OTHER GOVERNMENT ALLOWANCES.

  41. On final observation. If HB76 and SB76 actually passes the house and the senate,
    The bill will probably not look anything like the original bill. The special
    Interest groups at circling Harrisburg as we speak. The teacher’s
    Union , local school boards, and their associated cronies will see to that.
    Actually, I would like an amendment that reads as follows. “after reaching
    The age of 65, those Pennsylvania residents are forever relived of the
    Requirement of paying school taxes”. That has as much chance of
    Seeing the light of day as the residents of Harrisburg actually seeing justice
    Served to the people who raped the city with their “get rich schemes”.
    I actually don’t live in Harrisburg. I would just like to see justice served
    On those who destroyed the city. The problem is that if you look
    Up the definition of justice in the dictionary, that definition will be
    Very much different than what the politicians envision. Politicians all
    Go to a POL-101 class where they are taught to spin the truth for the
    Sole purpose of confusing the people , who more often than not,
    Fall for the same song and dance routine that originally got them
    Elected. Believe me when I say that I wish with all my heart that
    I am wrong. But all the amendments to this bill will be spun and
    Explained as necessary to get the legislation passed. The end
    Product will not resolve the original issue – Obscene property
    taxes; The end product not eliminate all property taxes – less the
    10% to fund the current obligations – now that is a loop hole of
    Epic proportions – if you don’t think that the powers to be are
    Working on how to capitalize on that, then you must have watched
    Too much of the “Twilight Zone” in the sixties.

    We are all responsible for the elected house, the senate, the
    Local school boards, the county assessment commission, etc.
    We – including myself- have been far too complacent and
    Trusting of our elected officials. It would be nice to jettison the
    Whole bunch of them and get new people into office.

    Just remember you heard it here first.

  42. Art-Well said, and to that end I’m running for School Director in South suburban Pittsburgh. I and others have been on Mike Turzai’s ass to move this legislation, and frankly, I support it without reservation. By taking the control away from local municipal authorities, budgeting becomes exceedingly simple. AFT may read this and pull their endorsement. I don’t give a rat’s patoot. Laying 100% of the cost of education at the feet of the homeowners is just plain wrong.

    • You are incorrect – 100% of the cost of education does not fall at homeowners feet. I am in the PV school district (suburban Philly) and 10% comes from local income tax, 20% from the state. So at least 30%, in this example, does not come from homeowners since renters will still pay state taxes and local income taxes.

  43. I found out last night in our weekly golf league why some property owners just don’t get !
    Few days before our weekly golf,another league member drove me home from a weekend get away.That person shared with other golfers about our house,it was all
    positive about the manson we build.The work we did ourselfs for 4 years was something my wife and I are very proud of.

    The Story:

    My wife and I several years back decide to purchase property and build a new home.Alot of the work we did together,inside and outside to save money,simply we
    couldn’t affort to pay someone to do the work.Over the years in building our home we had to deal with our local school district taxing the property ASAP when we took
    occupancy from interim tax law ( back charging base on fiscal or calender year)
    at that time the house wasn’t even close to be complete.Never less a lesson was learned,that they can tax you and they will do everything that can to get make your
    experience difficult.
    So when the preliminary access value was established all hell broke out
    when they wanted $8000.00 and change for property tax payment. I had to stop to
    finish the house to fight the school district on the Interim bill they tried to net 30 days to pay.Two years later after meetings, then threw the courts we had to pay on a reduce amount.We had already payed on the property value for those years but that wasn’t enough.So the money we had for the house went for property taxes,which delayed finishing the house.

    To make life more difficult the reasssessment was born in Allegheny County.My property value only two months later after establishing a agreement
    threw the courts they raised the value 56%.

    The story continues today,but moral of story is from the day you build or buy
    your home you NEVER own it.Why is it so difficult to make the change to try a different approach.HB76 and SB76 gives the comfort to really own you home and
    fund the schools dollar for dollar.How can a state never realize a change is needed,when a new tax is born the decision is easy for them one in mine LIQ tax in Allegeheny County.Looked in the paper this week 6 foreclosure motions from school districts. NEED TO SAY NO MORE>>>>>>>>>>>>

  44. I really don’t believe that people are more concerned about deducting
    Their school taxes on their individual income tax returns. The last time
    I looked, the interest on the mortgage – which is deductable – was far
    In excess of the school tax, at least for people in the first 10-15 years of
    A fixed mortgage.

    We are losing sight of the real reason why SB76 and HB76 were
    Introduced to Harrisburg law makers. It was because people , especially the
    Elderly are losing their homes because they cannot afford the
    Obscene school taxes perpetrated on the citizens by this state by the
    Teacher’s union , local school boards, county assessment officials,
    And their cronies who would love to see the system remain as is.

    There are far more people in this state without children than there
    Are people with children in school. Why do we allow the few –
    Mentioned about – dictate to the many how our schools should
    Be funded. Have you ever added a room to your home ? Have
    You ever finished your basement ? have you ever put a fence
    Around your property ? Have you ever put in a pool ?
    Well, if you have, the people from the local county assessment
    Bureau are there to collect their pound of flesh. None of our
    Homes should be assessed by anyone for the purpose of funding
    The school system. These are our homes, and as stated more than
    Once by many people on this and other blogs, your home is not
    Yours until you eliminate the school property tax as a way of
    Funding the schools.

    When I went to school in Philadelphia, there were 40, 50 even
    60 people in a class. Everyone learned – must be the product of
    A proper home environment and loving parents. Now, the
    Teachers union wants 15 -20 children in a class. This requires
    Many more teachers and in turn , the benefits and retirement
    Plans cost us tax payers even more. The teacher’s union should
    Be dissolved. Their retirement fund dumped into a good 401K plan.
    They should contribute to this 401K plan just like I have for the
    Past 30 years of so. Then the state via a small wage tax increase
    Should contribute 4-6 % solely based on what the going rate is
    For 401K plans in the private sector. If the teachers don’t like
    The plan , then they can quit and get a job in the “Private“ sector
    Where I have worked for the past 46 years.
    If the parents are so concerned about John or Mary based
    On the new system for funding the school systems, then they
    Can move John and Mary to a private school and foot the bill
    Themselves however, we the tax payers should not be footing
    The bill for education via the school property tax.

    What people need to do is to unite. It does not matter whether
    You are republican, Democrat, Independent, Libertarian ,
    Socialist , we are all sacrificing our future security for the sake
    Of the Teacher’s union, local school officials, County assessment
    Bureaus and their cronies who benefit from the current system.

    And, your elected officials in Harrisburg are just as bad , even worse
    Because they have always had an agenda from the time they were
    Elected , that is, to stay in office and not to do what is ethically
    And morally correct for the homeowners of this state. Why is PA
    One of only two states that still has a liquor control board ?
    At best it is antiquated. At the worst it is loaded with patronage
    Jobs supplied by our elected officials.

    Thanks

    Art

    • Art …. You are soooo right …
      We have to be united and get this Done..
      Please People get every property Owner to sign up

      Thank you all

  45. Unfortunately, here in Philadelphia there is also the continual sight of these so called school children behaving like Prostitutes and Gangsters, and every uncivilized appellation there is.

    As, I watch their behavior I think to myself: I have to pay high R/E Taxes that negatively affect my quality of life;…just so they can go to so called school, which is really just their gang hangout.

    A few young people do actually go to school to learn but their number increasingly is too limited to justify the continually increased Taxation that negatively affects my life and those of other homeowners, especially those, like myself, who have no children in the Philadelphia Public Schools so we truly pay for something that has no benefit to us in addition to it seemingly being wasted money for a large population of young people who do not go there to learn.

    • Wow way to go with your stereotypes of “urban” youth. I am sure you are for fact based policy making!


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