Mayor Nutter’s proposed operating budget for fiscal year 2014 included $10 million in relief for small businesses that experience an increase in property taxes under AVI.
The relief measure will be aimed solely at property taxes, not the use-and-occupancy tax for which businesses are already paying a steep price.
“I don’t really have much quarrel with real estate taxes,” said business owner Rebecca Wright, who expects to pay $1,781 less in property taxes at the proposed 1.3 percent rate. “The others chase more [businesses] away.”
The Business Use and Occupancy Tax requires that every business using a portion of property in the city for any of its activities pay 5.5 percent of that portions value to fund the school district.
Amid threats of being unable to continue operating, the school district received an additional $40 million after a vote by City Council last year. Businesses contributed $20 million through a 20-percent increase in the use-and-occupancy tax.
The mayor’s proposed budget doesn’t include any additional funding for the school district, which is requesting an additional $60 million from the city. This may lead to an increase in the tax that is dedicated to the school district – the Business Use and Occupancy Tax – once again.