What’s Next After Property Taxes Ballot Question Passed

BY IRISH HAINES

Pennsylvania ballots included a question regarding a constitutional amendment that would eliminate property taxes.

According to election results, 53.95% of voter turnout voted in favor of amending the Homestead Property Tax Assessment Exclusion. This amendment is a way for homeowners, whose permanent housing resides in the taxing jurisdiction (school district, county, or municipality), to get back real property tax relief.

According to city wide results, 60.98% of Philadelphian voters voted against the act.

According to Philly.com, “Lawmakers and advocates say that the current reliance on property taxes — which account for about 30 percent of local and state revenue in Pennsylvania and are a primary source of school funding — is especially harmful to homeowners on fixed incomes.”

Now that this has passed, it is up to state legislators to make moves to amend the law. Jurisdictions that receive funding from property taxes will now have to seek a way to replace that funding from other sources of revenue, such as increasing sale and state income taxes.

Pennsylvania homeowners will still be expected to pay property taxes on a portion of their school district’s long-term debt, which varies across the state.

This law would also only apply to primary residences, thus taxes would still have to be paid on commercial and industrial properties and multiple homes.