What is AVI, and what will it mean for Philadelphia?



Philadelphia is in the midst of a massive overhaul of its property tax system. Mayor Michael Nutter’s Actual Value Initiative, known by its acronym AVI, is attempting to match city property assessments with actual market values. It means that many property owners could see their taxes go down modestly, but homeowners and businesses in neighborhoods that have gentrified over the last three decades are facing much higher taxes. With the new assessments rolled out across the city just over a week ago, now City Council must decide on a new tax rate, and the real political battles have begun. Joining us to explain how and why Philadelphia got here are Philadelphia Finance Director ROB DUBOW; KEVIN GILLEN, economist and senior research consultant with the University of Pennsylvania’s Fels Institute of Government; and PATRICK KERKSTRA, who has been covering the intersection of taxes and politics in Philadelphia for Philadelphia Magazine, the Philadelphia Inquirer and as a Philadelphia Journalism Fellow for Next City.

Photo by Flickr user Luis Argerich

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