|Contact:||Kevin Evanto, County|
PITTSBURGH – County Executive Rich Fitzgerald announced today that an improved website for 2013 court-ordered reassessment values is now available to taxpayers. The site includes full information on each property, including general information, building information, images of the property, and comparables used to set the value. Currently, reassessment information is only available for properties in Pittsburgh and Mt. Oliver. Other municipalities will be added to the site as reassessment notices are mailed pursuant to the court order. It is accessible from the county’s website at www.alleghenycounty.us.
“When these values were first released, taxpayers were not given the information they need to fight this reassessment,” said Fitzgerald. “This new site gives taxpayers tools they need, along with information on deadlines for the informal reviews and formal appeals, frequently asked questions that will be constantly updated, a process that allows taxpayers to request data corrections without going through the informal review process, and an avenue to ask additional questions about their property value.”
Under the current process set by the court, informal reviews are being used to make corrections to property characteristics. Rather than require property owners to come to downtown Pittsburgh for a review, County Executive Fitzgerald has established a process that allows taxpayers to submit data corrections via e-mail to the Office of Property Assessments. Such submissions will be reviewed and confirmed, but may not automatically result in changes. Changes that are made may increase or decrease a property’s assessed value. In some cases, an assessor will visit the property to verify the data and will adjust the value, up or down, based on what he or she observes.
“When the court took over directing the reassessment earlier this month, I vowed to make any and all information available to taxpayers that they may need or want to fight their reassessment,” said Fitzgerald. “This is just the first step in what I expect to be many in providing tools to property owners in the county.”
Last week, Fitzgerald urged taxpayers to join him in this fight by calling on their municipalities and school districts to enact resolutions calling for a stop to the court-ordered reassessment, as well as for action by the General Assembly for a moratorium and comprehensive, statewide solution. Residents are also being encouraged to contact their State Representative, State Senator and the Governor. A website, “Fight the Fight,” has been launched to track which municipalities and school districts have enacted resolutions, as well as those taxing bodies that have intervened in the ongoing lawsuit. The website also provides meeting information for municipalities and school districts, as well as contact information for members of the General Assembly and the Governor. It can be found at www.alleghenycounty.us/FightTheFight.
“We continue to hear that this is a local decision and a local issue,” add Fitzgerald. “By working together with our municipalities and school districts, we can show the State Legislature that we are unified in our request to put an end to court-ordered reassessments in Allegheny County.”
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