Washington, D.C. – March 4, 2009 – (RealEstateRama) — Rep. David G. Argall (R-Berks/Schuylkill) has introduced legislation in the state House that would give Pennsylvania voters a stronger voice in the ongoing debate about the best way to reform or replace the state’s outdated school property tax system.
The measure, House Bill 637, was officially introduced on Feb. 27, and was referred to the House Finance Committee – where Argall serves as minority chairman – on the same day.
“Homeowners are being crushed under the burden of this archaic tax system,” Argall said. “They’re tired of the stalemate that has stalled action in the state Capitol for too long. I think it’s time to lay the options on the table and give the voters a chance to voice their preference through a state ballot referendum.”
Under Argall’s bill, four property tax reform proposals would be put on the 2009 General Election ballot. Voters would be given an opportunity to choose from among the four proposals or leave the current property tax structure intact.
The ballot referendum proposals would be tailored to represent actual bills that have been introduced in the General Assembly. The four property tax reform bills introduced in the General Assembly that have the most House and Senate co-sponsors would be represented on the 2009 General Election ballot referendum.
Argall, who has been a long-time advocate for the complete elimination of school property taxes, said he hopes that proposal will be one of the four available to voters through the ballot referendum.
“I know which plan I would vote for through a ballot referendum,” Argall said. “I’d vote to completely eliminate school property taxes, the same way I have voted on numerous occasions in the House to get rid of this out-of-date system. I think it’s time to give the people of Pennsylvania the opportunity to cast their votes on the fate of the school property tax system.”
Argall, who on Tuesday was elected to fill the vacant Senate seat formerly held by James Rhoades, said he will introduce the property tax ballot referendum bill in the Senate once he makes the transition to his new position.
Rep. David Argall
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Contact: Dan Massing
House Republican Public Relations