After yet another "successful" Allegheny County assessment appeal, my school tax is now $2,695, a $681 increase. With nothing in return, as a senior citizen without children, I question this method of taxation.
Here is another example of unfair taxation: Smith family, four school-age children, house assessed at $50,000. Jones family, two school-age children, house assessed at $100,000. Young family, no children, house assessed at $150,000. The Jones family, with half as many children, pays twice as much school tax as the Smith family. The Young family, with no children, pays school tax of the Smith and Jones families combined. How can anyone justify this unfair system of taxation?
Renters, as well as homeowners, pay school tax. All tenants pay an indirect school tax as part of their rent. When they raise school taxes, landlords raise rent. Higher school taxes, higher rent. The school tax on our rental property is $1,800. If this unfair method of taxation were eliminated, our tenant would receive a $150 per month rent reduction. Most landlords would act accordingly.
A fair alternative to property tax is sales tax (expand, raise or both). Everyone pays sales tax, including out-of-state commuters, tourists, etc. Elimination of the unfair property tax system would mean financial relief for homeowners and a monthly rebate for renters.
RALPH MAYHORN JR.