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Assessment appeals result in Pleasant Hills millage hike

| Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2014, 9:48 p.m.

After reopening the borough's $7 million budget, Pleasant Hills Council unanimously approved a 0.428-mill property tax increase.

The change approved on Jan. 20 brings the tax rate to 5.75 mills — the first increase since 2006. One mill now generates $589,465 in tax revenue.

Finance committee Chairman Joe Esper described the new budget as “revenue neutral.”

The previously-approved budget projected expenses at $7.1 million and revenues at nearly $6.2 million. The new budget is $7.1 million, revenues are projected at $6.5 million, and the shortfall is projected to be $575,823.

“We made cuts, so that the dollars are spent wisely,” said council President Dan Soltesz.

Allegheny County's assessment appeals process tells part of the story.

“Because of (assessment) appeals, the value of the mill has decreased,” Soltesz said. “We had to increase the millage to stay where we are.”

Although the appeals process has slowed, some reassessments and revenue fluctuations still are possible.

“The budget is a guide to determine tax rates. It's a fluid document,” Esper said.

Dona S. Dreeland is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5803 or ddreeland@tribweb.com.

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