Pennsylvania school board were forced by Gov. Ed Rendell and the Legislature to place a referendum question on the May 15 ballot asking voters to approve a tax shift from property taxes to either an earned income or a personal income tax.
"STOP urges all voters to vote NO on this carnival shell game they call tax reform. It is nothing more than a hidden tax increase," says STOP coordinator John Czekanski. "Any school property tax reduction you vote for in the referendum would be temporary. There is nothing to prevent the school board from later raising your school taxes every year through a millage increase. Then you will be paying more school property taxes again and the increased earned income taxes as well. "
The May primary referendum does not address county and municipal property taxes at all, Czekanski notes. Increases in those two property taxes mean you will be paying ever higher property taxes and the increase in the earned income tax, he says.
The referendum does not prevent reassessments on your property which can substantially increase your property taxes, Czekanski says.
"Act 1 legislation mandating this referendum was enacted by Gov. Rendell and the Legislature to pass the buck to the school board and now to you when the leaders in Harrisburg didn't have the courage or wisdom to properly address true property tax reform," Czekanski says.
For more information about PTCC, check out its Web site at http://www.ptcc.us/
Tony Phyrillas is a columnist for The Mercury in Pottstown, Pa. He received a first place award for Best Opinion Column in 2007 by Suburban Newspapers of America. He was also honored for column writing in 2006 by the Society of Professional Journalists.
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