Board of Revision of Taxes
BRT executive director Carla Pagan confirmed that the measure approved last month by Council to give board members a pay raise had its intended effect: the BRT has now greatly increased the number of appeals it is hearing.
A backlog of property tax appeals — and a plan to give raises to the board that hears appeals — has prompted angry words from Mayor Nutter.
Pay raises for members of the Board of Revision of Taxes could be delayed by a previous court ruling, even though City Council voted to raise their pay in an effort to break a logjam of cases.
“We need the BRT right now,” Councilman Mark Squilla says. “We need them to have these hearings. We need them to make sure they’re fair and as soon as possible.”
The initial reviews of about 25,000 property assessments won’t be completed before the deadline to file a formal appeal, so the city is urging property owners to proceed without waiting.
BRT executive director Carla Pagan says the time required will be determined by the number of formal appeals filed, which she estimates could range between 10,000 and 50,000, or more.
Officials had expected about 30,000 requests of first level reviews. The Nutter Administration’s spin on the lower tally: many people are on board with their new value.
Property tax bills in Philadelphia use 32-percent, but the state says Philadelphia’s ratio should be much lower — 18.1 percent. The city is asking the state to reconsider.