Average Monroeville property tax hike would be $100
Now that Allegheny County has updated its reassessment figures, the impact of proposed tax hike in Monroeville can be broken down into one number: $100.
That's about how much more a Monroeville home with an average assessment would be taxed in 2013 to make up a budget shortfall.
Of course, because of shifting home values during a reassessment year, it's not exactly that simple. A home that might have been considered to have an average assessment in 2012 might have seen its assessment rise or fall for 2013.
But if there exists a Monroeville homeowner who saw his 2012 assessment of $89,200 assessment increase to about $105,000 over the last year, the proposed budget will cost an extra $100.
Monroeville's proposed 2013 budget — which has to be approved by Jan. 31 — shows a $2.6 million deficit even if officials choose to deplete the remaining funds from the general fund reserve for municipal retirees and a fund set up in 2002 to expand Monroeville Community Park.
According to December reassessment data from the county, the overall value of property in Monroeville increased by 26 percent, from $2.4 billion to $3.04 billion.
The increase in value, however, isn't going to solve the municipal deficit. State law prevents municipalities from reaping a windfall in tax revenue from reassessments. So local officials are required to adjust the tax rate so that no more than a 5-percent increase is collected after a reassessment year.
The 2012 tax rate was 2.2 mills. The 2012 tax rate translates to a 2013 rate of 1.88 mills, which includes the extra 5-percent revenue that the law permits.
To close the deficit, municipal manager Jeff Silka has proposed a 0.95-of-a-mill tax hike, which would bump the 2013 tax rate to 2.83 mills.
The Allegheny County website lists the 2012 median home assessment in Monroeville at $89,200. That assessed value carried a local tax of $196.
Monroeville tax collector Pat Fulkerson estimates that the median assessed residential value in Monroeville this year will be about $105,000. Under the proposed 2.83-mill tax rate, that property would have a municipal tax liability of $297 in 2013.
Senior citizens receive a discount on property taxes.
However, a tax hike isn't a certainty. Not only would Monroeville Council have to approve a hike, so would a judge on the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas. After a reassessment year, court approval is required to raise taxes by more than the 5-percent margin allowed by the law.
If council chooses not to raises taxes — or if a judge rejects an increase — council could vote to cut certain municipal services, which could be offered through county programs.
Councilman Bernhard Erb proposed a savings plan last month that would include transferring the local emergency dispatch services to the county and outsourcing the collection of the local services tax and delinquent earned income tax. He said his plan would save the municipality nearly $600,000 in 2013.
Councilman Steve Duncan said last week that members of council have discussed their options in recent weeks.
“We're still looking in to that right now,” Duncan said. “We're discussing all avenues, as far as what we're going to do here.”
Kyle Lawson is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-856-7400, ext. 8755, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.
- Monroeville could hire two code enforcers in 2016
- Gateway board decides against seeking solicitor offers
- North American Martyrs expands classroom technology in Monroeville
- Surveillance video eyed for clues in Plum school bus theft, crash in Monroeville
- Pitcairn Council incumbent, 2 newcomers victorious
- Monroeville salt, plow crews get ready for snow season
- Monroeville chamber urges residents to ‘shop local’