Property Tax Abatement
The comprehensive residential and commercial tax abatement program in Warren County exists because of the passing of the Warren County Tax Relief and Redevelopment Act of 2023, which provides for tax abatement on new construction and improvements to properties in specific Warren County, Pennsylvania zones. The program aims to incentivize redevelopment projects in Warren County and lower the burden of building on home and business owners.
If you are about to execute a construction project that would normally trigger a property tax reassessment on your property (such as building a new structure on land or adding an addition), there is a simple step process for obtaining a tax abatement if your municipality offers it. Please read the instructions below as well as contact the Warren County Tax Assessment Department at 814-728-3420 or email the office using a form on this website.
Citizens are also encouraged to contact their local municipal office for more information. The participating municipalities are Clarendon Borough, City of Warren, Glade Township, Limestone Township, Pleasant Township, Sheffield Township, Tidioute Borough, and Youngsville Borough. Conewango and Pine Grove Townships are participating but have unique program structures.
Procedure for Obtaining Exemption:
- Any person desiring tax exemption pursuant to this Ordinance should apply to the appropriate municipality within the Investment Opportunity Area (defined by the municipality) at the time that a building permit is secured for construction of the Improvement or New Construction, as the case may be, or at the time of the commencement of construction if no building permit or other notification of Improvement or New Construction is required. The application must be in writing upon forms specified by the County Assessment Department setting forth the following information:
- The date the Building Permit or “Letter of Intent” was issued for said Improvement or new construction;
- The location of the property to be Improved or Constructed;
- The type of Improvement or Construction (commercial, mixed-use, or residential);
- The summary of the plan of Improvement or Construction;
- The estimated cost of the Improvement or Construction;
- Whether any governmental body has condemned the property for non-compliance with laws or ordinances;
- Verification that the property has received a proper Zoning Permit (if required);
- Such additional information as the municipality may require.
- On the application form for a building permit, there shall be a notice from the relevant municipality informing the requestor of the permit of the availability of tax abatement pursuant to this ordinance and the accompanying ordinances by the other taxing bodies.
- The municipal Secretary or administrator shall forward a copy of the exemption request to the County Board of Assessment Appeals. The Board shall determine whether the exemption shall be granted and shall, upon completion of the Improvement or New Construction, and notification from the Borough or Township’s designated Building Code Official that the Improvement or New Construction complies with all applicable Building Codes, assess separately the Improvement or New Construction and calculate the amounts of the assessment eligible for tax exemption in accordance with the limits established by the Municipality's Ordinance and notify the taxpayer and the local taxing authorities of the reassessment and amounts of the assessment eligible for exemption, which exemption will commence in the following tax year. In the case of New Residential Construction, the Board shall separately assess the Dwelling Unit and the land upon which it stands and shall otherwise perform its duties as above provided for construction or improvement to residential, mixed-use, and commercial properties.
- It shall be the applicant’s responsibility to report on the completion of the project through written notification to the County Assessment Department by physical or electronic mail. If the applicant does not notify the Assessment Office within 60 days of the completion of the project, the tax exemption application shall be considered void, and the property may be subject to reassessment. The section does not alter or negate any requirement to notify a municipality of the completion of construction under any other ordinance relating to building construction.
A project will be completed when the proper municipal authority issues an Occupancy Permit, construction is completed, or any new structure outlined in the original application is utilized for residential or commercial purposes.
- The subsequent amendment of this Ordinance, if any, shall not apply to the schedule of taxes exempted to any Improvement or New Construction of any Residential or Non-Residential properties or to any request initiated before the adoption of said amendment.
- Glade Township Tax Abatement Ordinance
- City of Warren Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Clarendon Borough Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Conewango Township Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Limestone Township Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Pine Grove Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Pleasant Township Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Sheffield Township Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Tidioute Borough Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Warren County School District Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Watson Township Tax Abatement Ordinance
- Youngsville Borough Tax Abatement Ordinance
In late 2018, the Redevelopment Task Force finalized a report (PDF) that provided an overview of recommendations to the Warren County Board of Commissioners to expand and promote redevelopment. One of the initiatives outlined in the report was the concept of expanding residential and commercial tax abatement programs so that citizens and business owners could adjust, build and expand their properties and have their taxes remain flat for some period of time (rather than being immediately re-assessed). This would provide a major incentive for people to redevelop their properties in Warren County.
Commissioner Jeff Eggleston, the chairman and architect of the Redevelopment Task Force, took the concept to the Warren County C.O.G. (Council of Governments) and the Warren County School Board, and both entities were supportive. Since then, he and the County Solicitor, Nathaniel Schmidt, have worked diligently with the participating taxing bodies to move the project forward. All interested municipalities, the county, and the school district have lined up and have had their various ordinances and resolutions passed, and the program is now officially active, starting December 2023.
Click here to view the original summary document (PDF), which gives an overview of the original program pitch.
- Erie County LERTA Ordinance 2019-38 (PDF) - This includes both the County ordinance and the Erie County School District resolution.
- News Release - Commissioner Proposes Residential Tax Abatement Program (PDF)
- Tax Abatement Program Municipal Summary Document (PDF) - Originally used to propose program to municipalities.
- Tax Relief and Redevelopment Act Fact Sheet (PDF) - Original Fact Sheet for LERTA Expansion
- Washington County Residential Tax Abatement Ordinance (PDF) - The ordinance outlines a joint public hearing between the County and the School District
- Improvement of Deteriorating Real Property or Areas Tax Exemption Act (IDRPA)
- Township Code Related to Ordinances
- Borough Code Related to Ordinances
- Bradford, Pennsylvania Residential LERTA Program
- Urban Redevelopment Law
- Local Economic Revitalization Tax Assistance Act (LERTA)