Rep. Kevin Schreiber wants to increase York Co. property tax, County Commissioners not on board

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Increasing property taxes across York County. Democratic State Representative Kevin Schreiber says it needs to happen. Some communities are struggling because they have so many tax-exempt properties.

Representative Schreiber’s idea comes from one that was first presented nearly 20 years ago in York County. He says it still has merit and could get struggling communities on the right track. He wants the county to stand alone and do its own property tax reform, since the state isn’t.

“Here’s an idea where we don’t have to wait for Harrisburg to act,” said Schreiber.

By increasing county taxes Schreiber says people could see a reduction in municipal taxes and over time accumulate savings. One of the reasons behind this is to help make up for the county’s tax-exempt properties and help struggling communities.

37% of York city’s properties are tax exempt. If those properties paid taxes it would generate 12 million dollars. That’s nearly double the 7 million dollar budget deficit the city faced at the end of last year.

“If we really are serious about property tax reform – we need to do it at a state level. But this wouldn’t preclude state reform. If we did this here in York we could do something that was unique to York county and could probably benefit York county,” said Schreiber.

Schreiber gave an example of increasing taxes by 1 mill. That’s about 27 million dollars county wide. If you own a property estimated at 100,000 dollars you would have to pay another 100 dollars. But it would help a city like York by 5.5 million dollars a year.

Two of the three county commissioners would have to vote yes for this idea to become a reality but none are on board.

“I do not think real estate taxes are a way to collect fees from people, taxes from people to pay for services we provide in the county,” said York County commissioner, Doug Hoke.

Democrat County Commissioner Doug Hoke and the rest of the commissioners say it sounds good on paper but the majority of taxpayers wouldn’t want this.

“We’re really taxing people out of their homes and it really is a disgrace,” said Hoke.

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