Did you receive a property assessment in the mail in mid-February? Did you look at it and think, “That’s ridiculous–this house isn’t worth $XXX,XXX” and then went on with your life and completely forgot about it? That’s okay. Don’t freak out. Well, maybe freak out a little because you only have until March 31st to [...]
Tag: property taxes
Another day, another Actual Value Initiative panic attack. But fear not: Here’s a list of the latest drop-in outreach sessions and, as an added bonus for those who prefer not to leave their under- or overassessed homes, two telephone town halls. The sessions are described as offering one-on-one time with city staff members to have questions answered, including how to apply for the Homestead Exemption and how to apply for an appeal if you disagree with the assessment you got in the mail. IMPORTANT: Deadline for an appeal–called a First Level Review–is due by March 31st or 30 days after receipt of the Property Assessment Notice. Do not miss this deadline and complain later.
Philadelphia’s AVI debacle is beginning to garner national attention. Last week the Wall Street Journal ran a story headlined “City’s Tax Plan Vexes Homeowners”. The article noted, as others have, that the contentious impact of the overhaul is due in part to Philadelphia’s historically haphazard property-taxation practices.
Maybe we’re splitting hairs, but the Journal didn’t get it exactly right. It’s not the historically haphazard property-taxing practices that are causing the contentious impact. Hell no, plenty of people were fine with haphazard–as long as they were being underassessed all these years.
Mayor Nutter issued a budget address today (in between protests), and naturally, he spoke about his baby AVI, which is meant to correct, as he characterized it, “a broken property assessment system that no one could understand.” From there he made a bunch of remarks that even he admitted are wholly unoriginal (“As I’ve said many times before…”) before he got to the tiny slivers we hadn’t already heard.
We realize that Mayor Nutter’s Actual Value Initiative (AVI) is terrifying to many, so we’ll try to calm things down with regular releases of information that might help get past the fear. The city has actually released a lot of the useful information itself, but it’s hard to focus on if it feels like you’re pedaling your tricycle into a couple of spooky Diane Arbus-like twins.