Property Assessments

Harrisburg, PA – March 27, 2019 – Sen. Larry Farnese’s (D- Philadelphia) legislation (Senate Bill 217) requiring the certification of assessors working in the Philadelphia Office of Property Assessments (OPA) was unanimously approved by the Senate Consumer Protection and Professional Licensure Committee today.

“If signed into law, the legislation will ensure that all assessors in Philadelphia OPA meet statewide standards,” said Farnese. “This upgrade is important and will make certain that all taxpayers receive fair, uniform and accurate property assessments.”

Philadelphia currently has a requirement that assessors be certified, but this protection is not reflected in state law, Farnese noted. This leaves those not covered by the Philadelphia policy with no requirement to comply with certification.

Farnese said that his legislation would give any assessor who currently works in OPA — and is not certified — three years to comply with state standards, while all new hires would be required to be certified.

“There is no reason that assessors in Philadelphia should not be certified per one statewide standard,” said Farnese.

Last year this same legislation was unanimously passed by the Senate but failed to be considered by the state House of Representatives.   Farnese worked with State Rep. Mary Isaacson on the legislation this year and worked with former State Rep. Curtis Thomas in past sessions.  Rep. Isaacson has introduced companion legislation in the House.

Farnese said that he was pleased with the committee vote on Senate Bill 217.  The bill now goes to the full Senate for consideration. 

 Farnese said he hoped for a vote by the Senate soon.

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