Board Agrees To Slash Percentage To Calculate Property Taxes In Philadelphia

By Mike Dunn

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The city of Philadelphia and the school district could end up in an even tougher budget bind after a ruling yesterday by the board that hears property tax appeals.

One of the figures used to calculate property taxes is called the common level ratio — basically the percentage of market value on which the tax is based. Property tax bills in Philadelphia use 32-percent, but the state says Philadelphia’s ratio should be much lower — 18.1 percent. On Thursday the Board of Revision of Taxes heard the first of hundreds of appeals by commercial property owners who want the lower percentage used, and the BRT agreed.

Attorney Carl Primavera represented one of the owners.

“Using the city’s ratio would be an overpayment, an unjust amount of taxes,” Primavera said. “We believe any money the city loses is money it should never have had.”

Among those appealing are some of the largest properties in the city, including One Liberty Place and the Franklin Mills Mall. City officials are asking the state to reconsider its number and they aren’t yet saying what impact, if any, this could have on the budget.

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  • MikeInPhilly

    As a local residential home owner I have seen (and felt) in past years the city’s increases because “the market value is increasing”. So, now that the swing is going the other way I would love to hear our city’s response and see them quickly reduce out property taxes.

    Maybe it is time for the city to just charge every residence a flat rate no matter where you live. We all benefit from the same services so everybody should pay the same value.

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