Friday, February 17, 2017

Thousands fail to pay Columbia head tax

According to a 2016 Delinquent Per Capita Tax report provided by the Columbia Borough School District, 2,169 accounts remain unpaid - for a total of $35,788.50.

The 2016 Columbia Delinquent Per Capita Tax Report can be found HERE.

59 comments:

  1. So why do the rest of us have to pay it?

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  2. I think it is bad when a member of borough council can not pay $15.00, now $16.50 for his taxes. Instead of spending borough tax money for tree grates and decorations, pay your school head tax.
    It is time to collect. I wonder how many are in arrears for property taxes. Taxes are tough to pay due to our tax base, but reform is needed. Harrisburg wake up.

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  3. Ugh...I hate this nuisance tax yet it needs to be paid. About 10 years ago I forgot to pay it. I was later contacted by a very rude collection agency who acted as if I defaulted on a million dollar loan. I paid the tax and penalty and never forgot to pay it again. I am sure there are some people on the list who simply forgot, like I once did, but I wonder how many people are on the list who simply do not give a rats behind about the tax and have no intention of paying it.

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    1. Agreed, I forgot it too already, but it's still a tax it's still due.

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  4. How do they get away with not paying? Maybe we need a bill collector

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    1. The bill collector is on the list.

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    2. It looks like borough council did not do a background check for debts. At one time,if you had liens placed on you, you could not serve.

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    3. If that's true they need to dig a bit deeper, not going to take more than a small shovel because it's fairly shallow. They don't want to see it. Its all there in black and white yet its invisible to those in authority.

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  5. Guess I'm stupid for paying it then. I pay a ton in school taxes for my home now as it is. So people can't even pay $15 a head? Actually makes me sick. Make them accountable to pay or stop the tax. Just keep taking from the homeowner as usual until there is no homeowners left. We will all be taxed out.

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    1. If you receive a bill for the tax and don't pay it, it goes to a collection agency and automatically adds an additional fee. I think it's $30 extra.
      The problem is many people do not receive a bill for this tax. If everybody received and paid this tax, I believe the revenue would be around $125,000.00

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  6. Ahh... the list of shame. It gives me a lower impression of them. Some on that list are friends of mine. Go figure...

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    1. It can be an honest mistake or oversight so just admit that, pay it and move on.

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  7. Every other township and town takes it right out of taxes on paychecks. This looks like an issue with collections, not the people. I know some people on there who don't even work in town!!

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    1. You are probably thinking of an occupational privilege tax. That money goes to the governing body,not the schools. I live in Columbia,but the tax that you are referring to goes to West Hempfield, because the firm I work for is located in West Hempfield.

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    2. This tax is not based on employment. It is a per capita tax for residents of Columbia. Each resident over age 18 would receive a bill based on the census. This includes renters.

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    3. That is what we pay now, the per capital tax. Years ago, in early spring, census takers would go door to door with a list with the names that live in that household. Now they mail the forms and you return it in so many days.

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    4. There's no accurate way to know how many people are living in a house, therefore this tax will never be equal for all residents.

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    5. I work in Manheim Twp and they collect taxes and also Columbia collects the taxes. Columbia's are 4 times as much as MT's. What is this? Being taxed to death. No wonder people move out!

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  8. Funny! Lot of big feeling people on that list! PAY UP!

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  9. Why is this person allowed to be on borough council when he cannot pay $15,00 and he is the person who says we must go after these people in town who do not pay their taxes people who live in glass houses should not throw stones

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    1. Maybe the Lancaster paper should interview him now.After reading about his vision of Columbia's future, he owes the youth of Columbia $16.50.Get your house in order before you pass your vision on.

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    2. Very well said.

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  10. Looking over this list, I just can not believe that there are so many people that did not pay. Seeing former officials,teachers and other prominent people that preach to pay your taxes and they do not,blows my mind. No wonder respect for the government is dropping.

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    1. I did not see the name anonymous on the list.

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  12. Just wondering, why all these comments signed with "anonymous"? What or who is everybody afraid of in town? You all have legitimate questions! Just couldn't figure it out. :(

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  13. After all, it's so easy to forget such a small tax. Any of us could overlook something like this. Our lives get busy or complicated at times. Some people have tragedy enter in their lives. Any number of reasons could cause us to overlook this payment. Aren't there any reminders sent out?

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    1. I could understand maybe a hundred forgetting, but 2100 people forgetting or overlooking.
      The borough government sends out reminders about their taxes,but I do not know if the school district or not. If they would send out 2100 notices at $.47 each, that would be $987.00.
      We all overlook things, but that number is kind of high.

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    2. People, you have to remember people come and people go! They rent and are only in town for maybe a few years. They leave and their name is on the list but they are long gone!!

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  14. We still pay the only now they are double and if you pay them by a certain date they deduct your check. So make sure before you whine you know how the system works

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  15. Tell me why.... For comments that are posted as anonymous- if they are positive, Columbia Spy doesn't post them, but if they tear apart a councilman, they get posted? It's really sad that Columbia Spy gets to decide who hears what and gets to filter positive energy out of the borough.

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    1. As soon someone has something positive about the current council - I'm sure it will be posted!

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    2. So you are saying this is "Fake News" as our new POTUS announces all the time. Remember the arrogant cannot hide behind the normal.

      TidePride!

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    3. ????. Very bizzare comment. What does this have to do with fake news.

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    4. It was already done numerous times. Most recently, on Sunday February 5,2017 there was a link posted on this site to an article in LNP regarding a councilman. There was also an article on this site about the swearing in of a new councilperson. There also was an extensive article done last summer on a councilman. Perhaps the person making this comment only sees the "negative" articles.

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    5. I think the person making the original comment sits at the council table.

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    6. I'll second that thought!

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  16. My children are on this list and have not lived in Columbia since 2010 and have been registered in another district since then and continue to live there. My only ever child on this list was a minor at the time for the year she was "delinquent" and did not live in Columbia. I really think someone did not do their job by adding people to the list that do not belong there since they have not lived there in years and by publishing a list that published some names that do not belong there. I will encourage my children to look into this and see if there are any legal actions that can be taken since this is obvious defamation.

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    1. Each year you receive thru the mail a list of all occupanuts in this household. It is your responsibility to return this format with or without changes. Don't blame the system.

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  17. The system is no good! We have no money to fix this system!! They dont want the system fixed so they the few can go on taking and not paying fair taxes!!

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  18. I agree this tax can be overlooked as lives are busy and forget to pay but for home owners in Columbia, does the Per Capital Tax (Head Tax) bill still get mailed with the homeowners tax? When I paid my homeowners taxes I paid this tax at the same time. Makes me wonder if some of the folks on this list aren't paying their homeowners taxes as well. Also, if oversight for 2016, I'd like to see the list for 2015, '14, '13 etc. Question- what really happens to the folks that don't pay? Yes penally fee but what else? How does the borough gets its money? How does the borough have the means to track the folks that come and go? I'm sure there are more people living in Columbia not receiving a bill then on this list. How fair is this to folks that actually pay? Better yet, how are the folks in Columbia rewarded for paying, got it - their taxes go up because of a failed unmanaged, unmanageable system and process.

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  19. Remember, this tax goes to the school district,not into the borough coffere. I wonder to about past years.

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  20. I have been trying for 5 years to get my name changed on my taxes. I got married, took an updated copy of all my information to the district office, change it on the tax form yearly. The person responsible for updating the system doesn't like me or my husband and "keeps neglecting" to update the system. I pay it and always get the reminder that I haven't paid it and now owe the penalty. So I have to take off work, go the district office and show proof that I already paid it- been 5 years now and still not fixed. Yep my name is on the list and I have the cancelled check that it was paid.

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  21. What about the people that do not receive a tax bill because it goes directly to the mortgage company? If this is included with that bill the homeowner would never see it. I'm not on the list but I know several people on it that never received a bill.

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    1. All tax bills go to the homeowner, who then has the responsibility to send to the mortgage company. The borough and school district do not send to the mortgage company directly.
      This isn't a property tax that gets paid by the mortgage company. This is a "head" tax paid directly to the school district regardless of other taxes.

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  22. Time for Columbia to go around and do a true physical head count, update the list, correct any information in system the is not correct so person don't get charge the penalty as stated above by a resident because someone does like another.

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  23. Never knew the head tax went to the schools. Doesn't the schools get enough taxes from tax payers in school taxes?

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    1. This is verbatim from the school district's Website:
      The Per Capita Tax rate for 2016-2017 is $15.00 for every resident age 18 or over. Per capita tax name and/or address corrections must be made through the Columbia Borough School District Tax Office, 200 North Fifth Street, Columbia, PA 17512."

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    2. How many residents in Columbia ignore the census form or fail to report all the family members over 18 living at home.The parents may report, but ignore the rest due to the fact they may not know.

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  24. Four different taxes: Property tax, municipal tax, per capita tax and occupational privilege tax. This list is only the per capita tax.

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  25. I think we should have a 10% retirement Tax for all Teachers who retire at $3500 a month to fill in the school tax, that way 10% of the retirement money put in the budget can go to other stuff. Like our IT guy made $65,000 a year and our one IT laborer at $25,000 plus benefits, how much are we paying Elanco for 2 people that we had or is it pumped up.

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  26. yes and how about the tens of hundreds of renters/tenants who work the system, who don't pay this head tax. now that's a problem. create a tax just for all renters/tenants so they can pay towards educating thier kids, etc.

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    1. They would probably try to keep moving to beat it. It would mean the landlords would have to be involved in the collection of the tax somehow.

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  27. We responsible landlords pay a $100 fee per rental every year to the boro.

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  28. so what???? that's not for head tax. its to register your rental property. i know landlords pay taxes. i think that every renter/tenant 18 yrs and older should have to pay renters taxes...to help support their children in school. its crazy that our 90 year old parents are still paying taxes. its nonsense. bs.

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    1. I rent and dont have children! Why should i pay anymore!

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  29. There is no way to keep up with the transient population in this town. Tenants move in & out like hotels. We have furniture rental stores, finance here car dealers, dollar stores, uhaul to help move them around. Don't see this in Hempfield School District towns

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  30. never received the bill or i would have payed it

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  31. Point is it doesn't matter if you received or why you shouldn't pay. There should be a head tax for every resident over 18 to help fund schooling. Hershey does this & it works well. Find a way to collect the tax. It won't take a rocket scientist, just someone somewhere with a brain.

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