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Old 01-27-2007, 09:03 PM
23 posts, read 126,241 times
Reputation: 52


What is this exactly? From several other posts, I've gotten an idea that it seems like it's a privilege to work in PA, and of course that privilege comes w/ a hefty price. I'm totally clueless re: this as I was raised in PA, but moved out almost 10yrs ago, and now am considering moving to Eastern PA... so this is all new to me. Is there a range or is this tax a percentage of one's total wages? What does this extra tax do for the state/local coffers? Is the occupational taxes even across the state? Or higher in city areas and lower in the outlying suburbs or rural areas?
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Old 01-29-2007, 12:55 PM
Location: Selinsgrove, PA
1,513 posts, read 5,837,696 times
Reputation: 553
If I'm thinking of the right occupational tax that you're referring to, it's $10 per person in some communities and as high as $52 per person in other communities. It just depends on which community and which tax laws they've adopted. Your employer usually deducts this from your first paycheck of the year.

However, if you're referring to the local income tax, then that's 1% of your income which gets paid to your local school district. This is also deducted from your paycheck unless you're self employed. If you're self employed you can make quarterly payments, just as you do with state and federal income taxes.

There's also a tax that the school district assesses and one that the local municipality assesses, but those are based on the value of your property. These are payable once a year for each one, usually one around April and one around October. You get a bill in the mail for these and pay your local tax collector. If you rent I don't think you pay these - at least not directly. I'm sure landlords figure them into the rental fee somehow. My house is valued around $100,000 and these two taxes combined in my area run me about $1200 to $1400 per year. Each of these bills also usually include a $10 fee for an occupation privilege tax.

I hope one of these answers was the information you were seeking.
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Old 01-30-2007, 10:58 AM
434 posts, read 2,796,062 times
Reputation: 329
Pennsylvania gets my vote as the one place that knows how to tax in new and creative ways. I lived in Hershey while my wife was in grad school and I had to pay local income tax (I think it was around 1-1.5%), the $10 PA occupational tax, $250 or so for school taxes and another $275 or so for Hershey occupational taxes. I was renting, so I have no idea how bad the property taxes are but I certainly heard a lot of people complaining about them. So just in local taxes I was paying almost $1000 a year, plus state income tax and luckily no property taxes.

With all of those taxes I can see why it is hard to attract any new residents or employers to Pennsylvania.
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Old 04-07-2008, 11:07 AM
Location: Cumberland county, PA
68 posts, read 182,803 times
Reputation: 40
I'm moving to Pa from NC. I'll pay the occupational tax! Here in NC, they tax your car/RV/boat as annual property tax, yes personal property. For us, a 2002 chevy astro, 2004 trailblazer, and a very small RV...it is $500, every year. Job benefits suck, here in NC. I was blown away at how good the benefits are in PA. Personal income tax here in NC is now at 8%, and guess what even your groceries are taxed.
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Old 04-07-2008, 11:52 AM
Location: Newport, NC
956 posts, read 3,384,334 times
Reputation: 702
To confuse things even more, in some municipalities, it is no longer called an occupational privilege tax, they have other names for it. As stated above, it is a fee for the privilege of working within a municipality.
Also, I've done some comparing and overall taxes in PA are somewhat higher than taxes in NC.
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Old 04-07-2008, 01:52 PM
Location: Scranton
2,937 posts, read 2,769,607 times
Reputation: 570
Taxes, taxes, taxes. If Gov. Fast Eddie Rendell had his way, we would be paying taxes on the air we breathe.

But its a blue state....what do you expect?
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Old 04-07-2008, 02:28 PM
Location: Eastern PA
1,263 posts, read 4,192,062 times
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Our school district had a referendum to do away with the occupational privilege tax (it was quite high - my yearly levy was approximately $300 and I'm not in a particularly high-paying career field). In lieu of that, we now pay an increased local income tax of 1.35% instead of the former 1%. So they get you no matter what.

The tax that is near $10 which we pay here every year is the per capita tax. Then there is an additional $52 EMS tax - which laughably enough does NOT go to emergency medical services at all - what a stupid name. This is paid to the municipality where you are employed. Then there is the state income tax....
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Old 04-07-2008, 05:07 PM
53 posts, read 186,526 times
Reputation: 18
Default Taxes

Wow those taxes seem pretty cheap. Lets see Carroll Valley PA...

1. 1700 Property tax
2. 2200 School tax
3. 3.08% state income tax (flat tax, little to no deductions)
4. 1% county tax (flat tax, little to no deductions)
5. .5% school district tax (as if 2+ grand wasn't enough for under performing schools) again flat tax.
6. $4.90 per capita tax.

This doesn't include the 6% sales tax and gas tax and all the taxes you pay for phone use...

Not to mention $2.5k to keep the house warm in the winter... Thats not a tax, but it might as well be...

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Old 04-08-2008, 08:18 AM
Location: Selinsgrove, PA
1,513 posts, read 5,837,696 times
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We used to pay a tax based on our occupation but our area has done away with that - thankfully!

Now we pay an annual property tax to the school district and an annual property tax to the municipality. One is due in April and one in October, so they're spread out over time. These bills come in the mail to homeowners. There is also a $10 tax per person for both of these also.

Employers deduct the occupational privilege tax (usually $52) directly from your paycheck. My husband's employer (and many others) deduct $1 per week.

I was shocked to find out that some states (like NC and SC) tax property such as cars, RVs, boats, etc. every year! That just doesn't seem right to me.
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Old 04-09-2008, 08:00 AM
Location: Windsor Twp
60 posts, read 299,589 times
Reputation: 23
To add to that, If you work out of state, as well as self-employed, you have to pay the local tax 4 times a year since employers out of state do not factor in anything but the PA State tax each time.

Also mrs krabs, PA is a Red State with a Dem Gov, if I am not mistaken
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