All of Grant Street is getting ready for the reassessments to hit the fan this summer/fall, even if we get the sense that most Allegheny County residents don't know/have forgotten that they're getting new home values (and ultimately new municipal/county/school district property tax bills) soon.
Yesterday Rich Fitzgerald tried to get ahead of the game by calling on the Legislature to block the court-ordered reassessment, so we were interested to hear today what his possible rival for the county executive seat, Mark P. Flaherty, would say about the issue. Interestingly, he not only distanced himself from Fitzgerald's plan but took a swipe at Onorato's stance on assessments too (Fitzgerald is an Onorato ally, and Flaherty has been counting on Democratic committee anger at Onorato to win his party's nomination this spring.)
"We can't count on Washington and Harrisburg to solve our problems for us," Flaherty told reporters. "Rich stated he wants to to continue with the policies of the past. I've stated I want to bring change."
Chris Briem notes today that property re-valuations are scheduled to be issued on Independence Day, July 4. And at the long history of the delays (which Fitzgerald bascially called for) to real changes in the county's property taxing system:
It is not quite clear that new state legislation would have any impact on the court-mandated process we are reaching the terminal start on here in Allegheny County. Some small state constitutional issues in thinking a standing court order could be voided by legislative action, but I suppose it could gum up the legal situation enough to delay the whole assessment. Can you imagine? County complains for years it can't afford to do all of this. Then that it can't be done in the timeline anyone wants (they wanted to stretch this out in stages over next few years which Judge Wettick went along with per their request) only to pretty much give in and say the only practical way to do it is to do the whole thing by 2012. Then at the last minute it all gets thrown out or delayed to the point where they have to start over again in a few years. Hard to imagine, but stranger things have happened (in re: pension).