ShareThis Page

Armstrong County School Board postpones selling delinquent real estate tax claims

| Tuesday, April 15, 2014, 12:41 a.m.

The Armstrong School Board has put plans to sell its delinquent 2013 real estate taxes on hold until next month.

School board president Joseph Close said the board did not have the specific figures required to decide if it wants to sell the district's delinquent real estate tax claims to Municipal Revenue Services of McKean for a yet-to-be-determined amount.

Close said the board hopes to see a projection of how the budget would be affected by the sale.

“This program is more designed for districts that need money right upfront,” Close said. “We just have to see if there is money in the budget, and we're giving up money just to be in the program.”

The district would have to pay the company $141,000 upfront, and then 4.75 percent of the money it collects, said Business Director John Zenone.

After the fees, the district would end up paying $236,000 if it were to sell its claims for $2 million.

That's about 12 percent of the delinquent taxes owed.

About 11.6 percent, or just more than 2,900 of Armstrong School District's 25,000 taxable properties, are delinquent. Those properties account for $2.7 million in revenue, according to Zenone.

Last year, the district sold delinquent tax claims for about $2.7 million.

The board is moving toward raising real estate taxes for a third consecutive school year in its $96.8 million preliminary budget.

The spending plan's $3.5 million deficit remains, even with a millage increase of at least 1.84 mills, which is within the state's Act 1 index rate of 3 percent.

Armstrong School District assesses 56.64 mills of real estate tax. The increase would bring the tax rate to 58.47 mills and raise nearly $1 million for the district.

The board plans to pass a final 2014-15 budget by June 30.

Brad Pedersen is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-543-1303, ext. 1337, or bpedersen@tribweb.com.

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.