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Measures To Ease Philadelphia’s Transition To AVI Pass In State House

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(The Pennsylvania capitol, in Harrisburg.  File photo)

(The Pennsylvania capitol, in Harrisburg. File photo)

(Capitol dome, Harrisburg, Pa.   File photo) Tony Romeo
  Tony Romeo is Harrisburg bureau chief for KYW Newsradio...
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By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa (CBS) — The state House has passed and sent to the Senate a pair of bills that would ease the impact of Mayor Michael Nutter’s initiative to overhaul property taxes in Philadelphia.

One bill passed by the House would give Philadelphia and other counties more authority to collect delinquent property taxes. The other would give Philadelphia residents the ability to pay property taxes in installments. That bill had strong support from the House majority leader, Mike Turzai.

“Empirical research has shown that delinquency rates decline when residents are able to spread out the payments,” Turzai said.

A third bill in the package would provide protection for people who’ve lived in their homes for decades who may not be able to afford a huge spike in property taxes. That bill did not get a vote Wednesday, but Stephen Miskin, Turzai’s spokesman, says it is expected to be considered in June.

“Some members had some questions we weren’t able to fully get answers to,” Miskin said. “We’re going to run that when we get back.”

Meanwhile, the House has now authorized a study of whether most of the city’s share of gaming revenue should be applied for wage tax relief, as it is now — or property tax relief instead.

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