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Reassessments have Leetsdale property tax rates in limbo

| Wednesday, Jan. 16, 2013, 12:02 a.m.

Leetsdale Borough's millage rate is set at 8.5 mills, down from 10 mills in 2012.

Council President Joe McGurk initially suggested a 6.7-millage rate with an additional 1.3 mills allocated for road reconstruction.

But council members agreed Allegheny County's ongoing property real estate assessment dilemma could force millage changes in the future.

Under an order by Allegheny County Judge R. Stanton Wettick, municipalities have a few options when deciding a property tax millage rate, including changing their millage rate up until 10 days prior to property tax bills being mailed to property owners.

In Leetsdale's case, council members would have until sometime in late February or early March to change their minds.

In that scenario, an emergency meeting could be needed to approve any millage changes.

“There's no emergency here because, quite frankly, you're not going to know the real numbers until 2015 because this is going to go on for a long time,” council member Roger Nanni said of the county's assessment.

Nanni said he expects some of the larger property owners to receive some kind of assessment adjustment from an ongoing appeals process.

That, coupled with more than 100 abandoned properties, could keep the borough from collecting a larger number, Nanni said.

Still, Nanni said the borough's residents do not bear the tax burden.

“The economy might be bad in other places, but for Leetsdale Borough it's not that bad.”

Bobby Cherry is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 412-324-1408 or rcherry@tribweb.com.

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