Benninghoff Property Tax Relief Bill and Three Others Approved by State House Finance Committee

HARRISBURG – The state House Finance Committee today approved one bill introduced by state Rep. Kerry Benninghoff (R-Centre/Mifflin) and three others, all of which aim to reduce the burden of property taxes on homeowners across Pennsylvania.

“We took action on a group of bills that could deliver meaningful relief for property taxpayers across the Commonwealth,” said Benninghoff, who serves as chairman of the House Finance Committee.  “These bills would make a real difference in the life of taxpayers.”

Benninghoff’s House Bill 1685 – one of the four bills approved today – would allow school districts to increase their Earned Income Tax (EIT) rate in order to provide dollar-for-dollar property tax relief.  The bill would allow school districts to do this without seeking voter approval through a referendum, but they could only use those dollars exclusively to reduce or eliminate property taxes.

House Bill 1189 would empower school districts to reduce or eliminate school district property taxes by replacing the revenues through the enactment of an Earned Income and Net Profits Tax, Mercantile Tax or Business Tax, or a combination of any of these taxes.

House Bill 1677 would ensure the definition of a homestead is in line with language in the Pennsylvania Constitution.

House Bill 125 would amend the state Constitution to allow for the complete elimination of school district property taxes through existing homestead exclusions.  Current property tax relief – such as money generated through gaming and the state’s highly popular Property Tax and Rent Rebate program – is delivered to homeowners through homestead exclusions.  However, the state constitution limits the amount of relief that can be delivered.  Currently, relief cannot exceed one-half of the median assessed value of all homestead property within the school district.

“Property tax relief is a complex issue and that is why we are taking a multi-pronged approach to it,” Benninghoff said.  “We moved forward a package of bills that have the support of committee members and can realistically deliver on the promise of property tax relief.”

The four bills now head to the full House for consideration.

Representative Kerry Benninghoff
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact:  Dan Massing
717.772.9845 /
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