Green: Tax burden to fall on residents

Posted: May 23, 2012

Councilman Bill Green is continuing to push the Nutter administration on the potential for the mayor’s proposed market-value property-tax system to be a tax windfall for commercial property owners.

Green on Monday released a spreadsheet that predicts the impact of Nutter’s tax proposal, known as the Actual Value Initiative. Based on Green’s calculations, the shift to AVI could move $200 million to $300 million in overall tax burden from commercial to residential taxpayers.

Green said this could happen because commercial properties are now more accurately assessed than residential properties, which are collectively assessed well below their market values. He predicts that a tax system in which a flat rate is placed on a market value could mean that business property owners in the aggregate will see their bills drop while residential property owners could see an aggregate increase.

Nutter’s property-tax proposal sets a revenue goal that would bring in an additional $94 million for the school district.

Finance Director Rob Dubow conceded there could be a shift in tax burden under AVI. He said the administration was still reviewing the data.

Green has proposed that instead of collecting an additional $94 million through AVI, the city could double a business tax called the Use and Occupancy Tax — which applies only to commercial and industrial property owners. Go to greenforphiladelphia.comto see Green’s spreadsheet.


Contact Catherine Lucey at 215-854-4172, luceyc@phillynews.com or follow @phillyclout on Twitter. Read her blog “PhillyClout” at www.phillyclout.com.

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