Maloney’s Property Tax Homestead Exemption Passes House
HARRISBURG – The House of Representatives voted unanimously today to approve House Bill 2300, legislation authored by Rep. David Maloney (R-Berks) that would amend the Pennsylvania Constitution to allow principal places of residence to be excluded from property taxation.
A staunch advocate of eliminating property taxes in Pennsylvania, Maloney has taken a three-tiered approach – statewide tax structure reform with his co-sponsorship of House Bill 1776, reforming each school district’s tax structure piecemeal by signing onto House Bill 2230, and simply amending the state constitution to protect homes from property taxes.
“The issue of property taxes, particularly school property taxes, is a difficult matter to get traction on in the General Assembly,” Maloney said. “The state formula for distributing education funds in Pennsylvania allows school districts with static populations to receive funds disproportionate to their need, while growing school districts get shortchanged. The result is that growing school districts constantly raise property taxes to make up the shortfall, while legislators with districts that have low property taxes are unwilling to vote to change the system.”
House Bill 2300 would amend the Pennsylvania Constitution in a way that would allow two specific things to occur: It would give local taxing authorities the power to completely exclude homesteads from property taxes (right now they can only exclude 50 percent of the median homestead’s assessed value in the taxing jurisdiction), and it would remove the constitutional barrier that prevents the General Assembly from enacting legislation that would provide 100 percent property tax exclusion.
“As I only introduced House Bill 2300 in March, I am encouraged that my colleagues moved so swiftly to send it to the full House for passage,” Maloney said. “The understanding is taking root in the Legislature that school property taxes have spiraled out of control. Any tax that would take a person’s home after working their whole life to pay for it is simply immoral.”
To amend the state constitution, the same bill containing the amendment must be debated and passed in two consecutive sessions, and then approved by referendum vote by the people of Pennsylvania. The governor’s signature is not required.
State Representative David Maloney
130th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: Charles Lardner