February 28, the Washington Square West Civic Association held an open
community meeting with Philadelphia City Council members Mark Squilla, James
Kenny, and Dennis O'Brien.
It was a packed room as almost 100 neighbors
attended to get the latest information on the city's Actual Value
Initiative (AVI). CBS News channel 3 was on hand indicating how
important yet controversial the subject currently is in the city. Our
own Judy Applebaum made the 11 o'clock news that night referring to the
possible impacts AVI might have on our neighborhood.
residents have received their new proposed property assessments in the
mail some attendees had yet to receive theirs from the city. Residents can
also go to the Office of Property Assessment's (OPA) web site and look
up their new proposed assessed values (www.phila.gov/opa).
Much of the discussion Thursday night was focused on how OPA developed
the new assessments, how residents can have their new assessments
reviewed and the timeline for implementation of the new taxing
All 3 council members were actively engaged in the discussion
and reiterated their intention to force the city to maintain as much
fairness in the implementation of the new tax as possible. Residents
are encouraged to request a "Review" of their new assessment values from
OPA if they feel it is not accurate.
Overall, Wash West will come
through the new assessment process in much better shape than some
neighborhoods in the city. The property tax increase from 2013 to 2014
for Wash West as a neighborhood is estimated to be about 16%. Some
neighborhoods are seeing triple digit increases.
For the latest
information on AVI and how Wash West is helping to facilitate the
discussion keep checking the Wash West web site.