HARRISBURG – Allegheny County Rep. Jason Ortitay plans to introduce a package of bills known as the Property Tax Freedom Act, which will allow each individual school district to determine how it is funded. Currently, PA’s 500 school districts rely heavily on funding from property taxes. Under the package, school boards would be able to enact the following taxes – earned income, occupation, per capita, local services, business privilege, real estate transfer, public utility, realty, amusement, and mercantile. Any new tax enacted or revenue raised must reduce property taxes dollar for dollar permanently. Earned income tax can be raised to a maximum of 3%. School boards only can raise taxes to the approved limit each year (present day current law). If they wish to raise additional taxes, then there must be a voter referendum which must be approved. Primary residences no longer can be held as a lien for property taxes, which means people can not lose their home due to not paying property taxes. However, other tax liens and collection methods may be used, such as garnishing wages and government benefits. In order to promote change and move away from being dependent on property taxes, school boards must reduce property taxes by a minimum of 10% in the first year. A co-sponsorship memo is being circulated seeking support of the proposal.