House passes bill for outgoing tax collectors to turn over records within 60 days
The state House on Monday passed and sent to the Senate a bill that requires outgoing tax collectors to turn over records to their successors within 60 days of leaving office.
House Bill 2166, introduced by Rep. Rick Saccone, R-Elizabeth Township, passed by 185-10 with eight not voting. All Mon-Yough assemblymen voted for the bill.
Saccone introduced HB 2166 this spring after a dispute in Forward Township — and found out there were similar problems in other parts of the state.
“Currently the law just says that the outgoing tax collector cannot impede (his or her successor) but does not put a time on it,” Saccone said. “So people can delay and delay.”
“It is about time,” Forward board of supervisors chairman Tom DeRosa said after Monday's board meeting. “The outgoing tax collector could hold you hostage.”
Former Forward tax collector Christine Martin Loughner failed to turn over records by Jan. 15 to William Firczak, who defeated her in the 2013 election.
A township police officer said in an affidavit that Loughner refused to return the records despite repeated requests. DeRosa said the records would be subject to an audit normally held in the spring, but were needed sooner because of the transfer of office to Firczak.
On Feb. 5 the township filed a private complaint against Loughner, charging her with a second-degree misdemeanor of failure to turn over tax records.
A preliminary hearing was scheduled Feb. 24 before Magisterial District Judge Beth S. Mills in Forward but the township withdrew the charges prior to that hearing and she dismissed the charges.
Saccone proposed a 30-day limit but in the House Local Government Committee the bill was amended to give an outgoing tax collector 60 days to turn over their records.
Under his bill Saccone said the outgoing tax collector can keep a copy of the records but must turn the originals over.
Patrick Cloonan is a staff writer for Trib Total Media.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Local residents reminisce about Glassport pool
- More work to begin on Homestead-Duquesne Road
- Steel Valley extends superintendent’s contract
- Irwin woman waives sex charges to court
- Mon Yough school districts, nonprofits getting by for now with no state budget
- Homestead Cemetery board files for bankruptcy
- Elizabeth Township business forum draws a crowd
- Mifflin Road project is on schedule, within budget
- Legos, computers draw students to Elizabeth Forward tech camp
- Elizabeth Forward board OKs cost to move trailer
- 4-D Theater debuts at Kennywood