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State lawmakers propose property tax relief for longtime Pittsburgh homeowners |

State lawmakers propose property tax relief for longtime Pittsburgh homeowners

Bob Bauder
| Tuesday, January 22, 2019 3:24 p.m
State Sen. Jay Costa, D-Forest Hills.

Longtime Pittsburgh homeowners could be in line for city property tax relief under legislation proposed by local state lawmakers.

State Sen. Jay Costa, D-Forest Hills, and state representatives joined Pittsburgh Mayor Bill Peduto and city council members Tuesday in outlining the legislation dubbed Longtime Owner Occupied Tax Exemption Program.

The bill would permit Pittsburgh to enact legislation offering tax exemptions or deferments to longtime homeowners in neighborhoods where property values have soared because of development. It would be up to council to craft details, including eligibility, and would not include Allegheny County and Pittsburgh Public School District taxes.

“It will allow the city of Pittsburgh to create a program that would permit them to do a couple of things,” said Costa, the Senate minority leader. “One, they could exempt from city property taxes those households where they have long-term owner occupants who are experiencing a significant increase in their property taxes. They could also defer them to a later point in time until maybe the home is sold.”

Costa and city officials said they’ve heard from constituents who complained they cannot afford taxes on skyrocketing property values.

Councilwoman Deb Gross of Highland Park said property assessments in her district, particularly Lawrenceville and Bloomfield, have increased dramatically, from about $100,000 five years ago to $250,000.

Costa said he has yet to gauge support among Republican lawmakers, who control the Legislature, but he thinks the bill has a good chance of passing.

“We are unable to move forward unless the legislation passes at the state level,” Gross said.

Bob Bauder is a Tribune-Review
staff writer. You can contact Bob
at 412-765-2312, or via Twitter @bobbauder.

Bob Bauder is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Bob at 412-765-2312, or via Twitter .

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