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SCHOOL DISTRICT PITTSBURGH v. CITY PITTSBURGH AND BOROUGH MT. OLIVER (04/16/82)

decided: April 16, 1982.

THE SCHOOL DISTRICT OF PITTSBURGH, APPELLANT
v.
CITY OF PITTSBURGH AND BOROUGH OF MT. OLIVER, APPELLEES



Appeal from the Order of the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County in case of The School District of Pittsburgh v. City of Pittsburgh and Borough of Mt. Oliver, No. GD 80-24211.

COUNSEL

Robert J. Stefanko, solicitor, with him David H. Dille, Assistant Solicitor, for appellant.

Marvin A. Fein, Associate City Solicitor, with him Mead J. Mulvihill, Jr., City Solicitor, for appellee, City of Pittsburgh.

John C. Mohan, Mohan & Graff, for appellee, Borough of Mt. Oliver.

President Judge Crumlish and Judges Mencer, Rogers, Blatt and Williams, Jr. Opinion by Judge Blatt. Judge Palladino did not participate in the decision in this case.

Author: Blatt

[ 66 Pa. Commw. Page 239]

This action arose on October 2, 1980 when the School District of Pittsburgh (School District) filed a Complaint requesting Declaratory Judgment with the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County. It sought interpretation of Section 652.1 of the Public School Code of 1949 (Code), Act of March 10, 1949, P.L. 30, as amended, added by Section 3 of the Act of December 19, 1975, P.L. 511 (Act 150), 24 P.S. § 6-652.1. Particular reference was made to whether or not the School District is "coterminous" with the City of Pittsburgh (City) and/or the Borough of Mt. Oliver (Borough) for purposes of complying with the halving requirement of Section 652.1 of Act 150 which provides in pertinent part:

(A) The elected Board of Public Education in any school district of the first Class A shall have authority to impose taxes for the purposes of such school district as follows:

(1) Without ordinance and under the following statutes their reenactments and amendments, at the rates fixed therein, namely:

[ 66 Pa. Commw. Page 240]

(III) Act of August 24, 1961 (P.L. 1135, No. 508) (Income Tax), [24 P.S. §§ 588.1-588.12].

(2) In addition thereto, by ordinance on any persons, transactions, occupations, privileges, subjects and real or personal property as they shall determine not prohibited by the act of December 31, 1965 (P.L. 1257, No. 511), known as 'The Local Tax Enabling Act'; but no ordinance shall authorize the imposition of a tax on the wages, salary or net income of any person not a resident of such school district.

(B) Any ordinance authorizing a tax, other than under a statute and at the rate fixed thereby, shall fix the rate thereof and provide for the levy, assessment and collection of the same.

(C) In any case where an ordinance of the elected board of education imposes a tax on the same subject and person on which any coterminous political subdivision imposes a similar tax, the rate shall be halved as provided in section 8 of 'The Local Tax Enabling Act.' (Footnotes omitted.)

The School District is comprised of the City, with the exception of sections of the City's 12th, 31st and 32nd Wards, and of the Borough which is situated completely within the City, being bounded by the City on all sides. Both the City and the Borough impose certain taxes pursuant to the Local Tax Enabling Act (Act 511), Act of December 31, 1965, P.L. 1257, 53 P.S. §§ 6901-6924; the City, however, is not subject to the limitations of the Act inasmuch as it has been governed by a Home Rule Charter since January 5, 1976. See 53 P.S. § 1-302. The ...


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