Meadville Tribune

Local News

November 30, 2012

County commissioners mull Bloomfield tax plan

BLOOMFIELD TOWNSHIP — Crawford County commissioners may decide next week whether to back a tax abatement plan for Bloomfield Township.

Commissioners are being asked to approve a Local Economic Revitalization and Tax Assistance (LERTA) plan for the township that would reduce property taxes on renovated residential or commercial buildings and new residential or commercial buildings for a five-year period.

If a property is renovated, the real estate taxes on the valuation before the renovation took place still would be collected during the five-year period; or if a property was vacant, the tax value of the vacant land still would be collected during the five-year period, according to Alan Knapp, county planning director.

Taxes would be abated at 100 percent the first year; 80 percent the second; 60 percent the third; 40 percent the fourth; and 20 percent the fifth, with 100 percent collected the sixth year and beyond, Knapp said.

Knapp and Amy Schmidt of the planning office asked commissioners to consider the program as incentive for property owners to spur development and improve housing stock within township.

To qualify, the residential renovation must have a value of at least $15,000, while commercial renovations must have a value of at least $25,000, Knapp said.

Union City School District’s school board and Bloomfield Township’s supervisors both approved the program earlier this fall, Knapp said. But, all three taxing bodies — school, local municipality and county — must agree for the program to be in effect.

Commissioners are expected to act on the proposal at their board meeting Thursday.

 Keith Gushard can be reached at 724-6370 or by email at kgushard@meadvilletribune.com.

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