Senate Bill 76/House Bill 76

Real Estate Agent

Update to our hotly contended school property tax issue in PA...the vote last week was a tie folks!  And several Senators failed to show up to vote (why I have no clue).

The Lt Governor had to break the tie.  It is very upsetting that he did so by voting "No" to Senate Bill 76 and did so with a very evident smirk on his face.  It caused such an uproar that grassroots campaigners are now organizing around the state to make sure those who voted "No" will not be re-elected.  

Not sure what will happen next, I am watching for updates daily...





Pennsylvania is struggling right now with the state budget.  We are not alone.  Many states in the Union have had similar struggles.  What makes this budget especially significant though is the potential to pass Pennsylvania's Senate Bill 76.  This would essentially begin the process to stop the ever increasing school property taxes PA residents are suffering from and increase the State's sales tax and slightly increase the State's personal income tax.  

Over 250,000 PA residents have lost their homes due to the inability to pay for their school property taxes (this bill ONLY includes school property tax, NOT local or county taxation which would continue to be paid by property owners).  Many who have lost their homes are the elderly who live on fixed incomes and cannot afford the ever increasing taxation school boards and assessment offices enact to support the spending.  

Another population that suffers are the first time home buyers who simply cannot afford the home payments AND the additional tax payments in their monthly mortgage payments.  In some areas of PA the school property taxes for a $180K home are over $8000 annually.  


Many PA residents have had enough and have on-boarded with a grass roots campaign to not only support this bill but also to help draft and revise it.  The PA Association of Realtors are also supporters.  Some PA Senators also were involved.  But they have BIG opponents, the Teacher's Unions for one and many, many others who ironically would probably benefit if they decided to support SB 76 instead of oppose it such as:

Pennsylvania Coalition to End Homelessness

Just Harvest: A Center for Action Against Hunger

Feeding Pennsylvania

Greater Pittsburgh Community Food Bank

Hunger-Free Pennsylvania

Central Pennsylvania Food Bank

Chester County Food Bank

Coalition Against Hunger


The key point here is PA residents have more control over what they spend and how much they spend (the argument to increase the state sales tax) versus the continued & increasing school property taxation of home owners who have very little control over the amount they are assessed and ordered to pay through their county assessment office and school board officials. 


Certain PA Senators who once supported SB76 have turned "Benedict Arnold" recently as the vote day approaches, true colours are coming out.  I will continue to monitor this hot button issue as it directly affects the buying and staying power of local PA home owners I work with in the real estate market.



Posted by

~Aimee Schmitt

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Comments (3)

Sam Shueh
(408) 425-1601 - San Jose, CA
mba, cdpe, reopro, pe

start charging sales tax for cloths. I thought they did not charge it before.

Nov 17, 2015 02:21 PM
Aimee Schmitt

You are correct Sam Shueh we do not charge sales tax for clothes in PA, there are items in the bill that will be added to be taxed as well as an increase.  Thanks for commenting :)


Nov 17, 2015 02:26 PM
Dennis Swartz
Full Circle Property Management - Columbus, OH
MBA, GRI...experience counts!

Best of luck, no one seems to have an idea that works for everyone.

Nov 17, 2015 06:12 PM
Aimee Schmitt

Thank you Dennis Swartz. It is very frustrating that's for sure.

Nov 18, 2015 01:49 PM
John Meussner
Mason-McDuffie Mortgage, Conventional Loans, Jumbo Loans, FHA, 203(k), USDA, VA, - Walnut Creek, CA
#MortgageMadeEasy Walnut Creek, CA 484-680-4852

This is really good news, Aimee.  I know first hand PA is losing residents because of these taxes...when I looked for my first home, it came down to a home in southeast PA priced at $215K with taxes of about $13K/year.  The home I bought was $224K in DE with about $2K/year in taxes.  It was a no brainer between the low property taxes and no sales tax.  The 2 homes were about a 20 minute drive from each other.  

Nov 18, 2015 09:44 AM
Aimee Schmitt

Thanks for your comment John Meussner.  I would really like to post it to the PTTC website for all the grass root members to read but only with your permission.  I see you are now in a much better climate :)

Nov 18, 2015 01:50 PM