If organizations like Highmark, UPMC and city universities don’t measure up to state nonprofit criteria, Pittsburgh could stand to gain tens of millions of dollars more in revenue from real estate and payroll taxes that are currently waived.
Harris said a Pennsylvania Supreme Court decision in April found that a nonprofit working in Pike County didn’t meet the state constitution’s criteria to be a “purely public charity.” She said the ruling has opened the door for legal challenges to other nonprofits’ tax exemptions. (EPR, Noah Brode)
Great. Off we go!
Harris said her investigation into tax exemptions would take longer than 18 months to finish. (ibid)
What? So long? With $60 million or more at stake annually, and a fresh legal template at our disposal?
Perhaps once the Mayor’s office joins the Council President’s effort, things might be sped forward.
MORE: From the Erie Times-News, Ed Patella
ALSO: The PA Supreme Court ruling at issue Bobov vs. Pike, which basically states that the Legislature can not replace the Judiciary’s role in defining Constitutional concepts like “Purely Public Charity” simply because the Legislature would like to please hospital and university officials through using a much more lenient test than that which has been used by the Courts in the past. Thanks, Pike! The Ironborn will reave and pillage as it was in the old days all along the northern coast.
UPDATE: District 4 press release reports that Councilor Rudiak has called for a special public session to “examine the economic and social impacts of the large tax-exempt non-profits, with a focus on the region’s largest non-profit and employer, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC)” The City and County Controllers will be there, some “experts”, and Jeffery Romoff CEO of UPMC is invited.