Tag Archives: PSBA

PSBA position on HB 1213: Oppose

Pennsylvania School Boards Association. See pertinent statement by sponsor Warren Kampf’s (PA House 157) Dem candidate Melissa Shusterman here

HB 1213: Greatly restricts the rights of school districts and municipalities to conduct appeals of under-assessed property

On behalf of the 4,500 elected officials who govern the commonwealth’s public school districts, we request your opposition to House Bill 1213, sponsored by Representative Warren Kampf. This legislation would greatly restrict the rights of school districts and municipalities to conduct appeals of under-assessed property.

By limiting the right to initiate appeals, particularly with large commercial properties, school districts in your district could experience losses in revenue that will be very significant. This restriction in the ability to generate future local revenues will harm schools that are already grappling with overall declining state aid and unfairly shift the property tax burden to homeowners. We urge you to contact your districts today and discuss this issue.

Our members are very much aware that all other property owners in a school district have to bear the tax burden of under-assessed properties. Any property that is simply under-assessed for whatever reason inherently shifts the tax burden over to those property owners who are properly assessed in the form of increased millage rates. House Bill 1213 would take away the only voice on behalf of other homeowners and businesses being forced to subsidize under-assessed properties – school districts. This legislation will restrict school districts’ rights of uniform review of commercial properties. Those commercial properties that are undervalued will not be billed for their fair share of school property taxes….

keep reading at Pennsylvania School Boards Association

PSBA on Cyber, Charter Schools

Pennsylvania School Boards Association, updated 11/13/2012

Cyber, Charter Schools

When new legislation passes, PSBA is seen as the leader in analyzing it and helping members make sense of it.

What real charter school reform should look like

As the debate continues on charter school reform, it is important to understand the impact of each reform proposed. The reforms listed below will only benefit charter schools at the expense of students, school districts, and local taxpayers.

What charter school reform MUST NOT contain:

Statewide Authorizers
Sold as a panacea to a charter school’s problems, a statewide authorizer expands charter schools while allowing them to make an end run around local school boards, diminishing any chance to ensure that charter schools are accountable and responsive to their local communities….

Direct Pay
Touted as reducing the administrative burden on school districts, direct pay proposals actually benefit charter and cyber charter schools at the expense of school districts and local taxpayers….

Parent Trigger Conversion
Giving only parents the authority to make executive decisions about the school their students attend marginalizes other local taxpayers and silences the voices of the rest of the community and the locally elected school board members. …

Right to Know Law Exclusion for Charter Vendors
While not every record held by a vendor relates to the governmental function the vendor performs on behalf of a charter or cyber charter school, those that do should be accessible under the Right to Know Law….

Charter school reform continues to be an important topic of discussion centering on which reforms will create a fair and transparent charter school law. The reforms listed below will provide significant benefits to students, school districts, local taxpayers, as well as charter schools.

What charter school reform MUST contain:

An End to the Pension Double Dip
Charter and cyber charter schools get a double dip of taxpayer dollars for their pension costs, which is violative of the public’s trust. …

A Reduction of the School District Cost of Cyber Charter Tuition
School districts are overpaying cyber charter schools, plain and simple….

Increased Accountability
To ensure that charter schools are accountable to the taxpayers who are footing the bill, charter schools must be held to the same financial and academic accountability requirements as their traditional public school counterparts. …

read the full post, with more on each topic, at Pennslyvania School Boards Association