Philadelphia’s yearly real estate tax revenues are up $92 million from four years ago and are on pace to meet budget projections, according to City Controller Alan Butkovitz.

A monthly economic report from Butkovitz released Tuesday showed that the city’s real estate taxes for the 2017 fiscal year increased 8% to $1.20 billion compared to collections during the same period in 2013. Pennsylvania’s largest city collected 1.4% more in real estate taxes from July 1 to March 31 in the 2016 fiscal year. The bulk of real estate taxes are collected from January through March due to a March 31 deadline, Butkovitz noted.

Philadelphia's real estate tax revenue is on the upswing, according to City Controller Alan Butkovitz.
Philadelphia's real estate tax revenue is on the upswing, according to City Controller Alan Butkovitz. Bloomberg News

For Philadelphia to achieve its 2017 budget projections for real estate taxes it must collect a combined total of $44 million for the next three months, according to Butkovitz. The city allocates 45% of the tax into its general fund and remits 55% to the Philadelphia School District.

Butkovitz’s April 25 report also showed that monthly sales tax collections for March totaled $11.4 million, a 19% increase over the year-ago period. Home sales for March rose 13% to nearly 1,333. Yearly sales tax collections are at nearly $140 million heading into the final three months of fiscal 2017, Butkovitz noted.

Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney has proposed a $4.4 billion 2018 budget. He has also proposed issuing $300 million in bonds to improve city parks, recreation centers, playgrounds and libraries.

Philadelphia general obligation bonds are rated A2 by Moody’s Investors Service and A-minus by S&P Global Ratings and Fitch Ratings. The nation’s fifth largest city had $1.5 billion in outstanding GO debt in late 2016, according to Moody’s.

Subscribe Now

Independent and authoritative analysis and perspective for the bond buying industry.

14-Day Free Trial

No credit card required. Complete access to articles, breaking news and industry data.