Too soon to know if Philly tax crackdown is working


Philadelphia has been talking tough about collecting back taxes, but the chief collections officer says the city doesn’t have a good number for how much will be collected.

Philadelphia Revenue Commissioner Clarena Tolson says her department doesn’t have a solid estimate of how much money can be collected from tax deadbeats.

“We have with our real estate taxes which is a significant elephant in the room,” Tolson said. “We are still working through the process of final billing as they go through appeals We are seeing very strong performances on many of our taxes but I am not prepared as yet to estimate where we are going to wind up ultimately.”

Carla Pagan of the Board of Revision of Taxes says her office has heard about six thousand appeals to date resulting from the city-wide property re-assessment. Pagan says the good news is appeals are going much more quickly.

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“We were hearing 660 cases a week where before we were hearing 150 cases a week so that’s good news,” Pagan said. 

She says the goal is to finish residential appeals before the end of the summer, December at the latest.


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