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Unread 12-07-2011, 06:15 PM
 
719 posts, read 392,563 times
Reputation: 418
Quote:
Originally Posted by alleghenyangel View Post
Yeah, if I lived in Cranberry, not only would I be taxed less, but I wouldn't have to see beautiful historic buildings sit vacant and deteriorate until the point that they had to be torn down.

Discovering Historic Pittsburgh: Abandoned Buildings

I feel the same way. It is so sad to see these beautiful buildings in deteriorating condition. Even converting them to lofts or condos would be a better alternative.
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Unread 12-07-2011, 06:21 PM
 
1,135 posts, read 966,299 times
Reputation: 688
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianTH View Post
Should be no problem, then. I'll look forward to your answer.
I already pointed out the $9 million gift to Continental Building Systems, although there was some dispute as to whether that was a city or county authority. I believe you thought it was a county authority. The demolition of the Civic Arena is another waste of a few million. Remember that 'authorities' are just a contrivance of PA law to relieve elected officials of any official responsibility for wasted money (Stadium Authority) or poor service (PAT). But the money is still coming out of your pocket.
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Unread 12-07-2011, 06:24 PM
 
20,274 posts, read 16,412,983 times
Reputation: 2786
Quote:
Originally Posted by Copanut View Post
Some will see an increase in their taxes, some not so much. Overall, I'm willing to bet that most of the homeowners on this forum would admit their home is under assessed.
Due to the anti-windfall law, the question is not whether your property is underassessed, but whether it is underassessed more than the County's weighted average underassessment. A good number of people will see their assessments go up and taxes paid go down due to their property being less underassessed than that average.

That's why the politics of all this is going to radically change soon. Once a bunch of people realize their property taxes are actually going to go down, they are going to start fighting in favor of the reassessment.
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Unread 12-07-2011, 06:36 PM
 
20,274 posts, read 16,412,983 times
Reputation: 2786
Quote:
Originally Posted by jimmyev View Post
I already pointed out the $9 million gift to Continental Building Systems, although there was some dispute as to whether that was a city or county authority.
As I recall the Stadium Authority gets County funding primarily through RAD, and therefore such funding is not part of the County's operating budget.

(Edit: Actually, I'm wrong about that. RAD appears on the Operating Budget. Its revenues just can't be cut or transferred).

Quote:
Remember that 'authorities' are just a contrivance of PA law to relieve elected officials of any official responsibility for wasted money (Stadium Authority) or poor service (PAT).
I think it is even more complicated than that--the opaque relationship between the authorities and elected bodies allow certain elected officials to transfer blame for the consequences of their actions to other elected officials. So, for example, the state cuts PAT's funding, and then some people blame Ravenstahl for the resulting service cuts and fare increases, even though he legitimately has nothing to say about it.

In that sense the blame doesn't go away entirely, it just gets redirected to the wrong people.

Last edited by BrianTH; 12-07-2011 at 07:03 PM..
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Unread 12-07-2011, 06:56 PM
 
Location: Great White North Hills
7,996 posts, read 6,379,029 times
Reputation: 4185
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianTH View Post
Due to the anti-windfall law, the question is not whether your property is underassessed, but whether it is underassessed more than the County's weighted average underassessment.
I realize that, I'm merely stating that while people love to complain about taxes, most homes are under-assessed, I know mine is by about 30%. I have no problem with the increase, but I'd like to see some county perks eliminated.
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Unread 12-07-2011, 07:00 PM
 
20,274 posts, read 16,412,983 times
Reputation: 2786
Just some quick numbers:

I went to the County's 2008 Operating Budget. It had $736 million in revenues that year. Without the tax increase, it would only have $730 million in 2012. That's largely because federal and state funding is way down--federal down about $21 million, state about $14 million (obviously on a net basis everything else is up).

A $6 million cut may not sound so bad, but this is in nominal dollars. Adjusting for inflation (using 2007 to 2011, because we don't have 2012 yet, and in any event that is when the budgets in question were set), $736 million back then is worth about $804 million now.

So the real (meaning inflation-adjusted) cut would be more like $74 million. Which is why in turn the one mill increase is only going to help the operating budget keep up with inflation, and nothing more.
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Unread 12-07-2011, 07:01 PM
 
20,274 posts, read 16,412,983 times
Reputation: 2786
Quote:
Originally Posted by Copanut View Post
but I'd like to see some county perks eliminated.
What exactly do you have in mind?
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Unread 12-07-2011, 07:10 PM
 
Location: Great White North Hills
7,996 posts, read 6,379,029 times
Reputation: 4185
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianTH View Post
What exactly do you have in mind?
How many have cars they take home? How about taking public transportation?

The retirement packages need to be cut back, we can't afford those bennies anymore.

And strictly anecdotal, but true, if a county employee participated in a "wellness" program, they get the day after Thanksgiving off. Anyone in the real world get that perk?
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Unread 12-07-2011, 07:12 PM
 
3,069 posts, read 1,568,564 times
Reputation: 1600
Quote:
Originally Posted by BrianTH View Post
What exactly do you have in mind?
They can start with small simple things like the reduced parking fees charged to 500+ city/county workers that the unclean masses don't get - but then they might be forced to use the underfunded public transportation
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Unread 12-07-2011, 07:41 PM
 
20,274 posts, read 16,412,983 times
Reputation: 2786
Dollars, please. How much exactly are we talking about with these ideas?
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