Readers responded to the Jan. 22 Tri County Record’s On the Record with Carol column that addressed how homeowners could save on their annual school taxes.

Randy and Debbie Blough, volunteer Client Information Specialists at the Honey Brook Food Pantry, reached out to inform us of two possible ways to do that. First, the Pennsylvania Homestead Exclusion available to property homeowners who live in their home; and second for mobile home owners who live on rented lots to keep their property assessment up to date every three years with the county assessment office since they depreciate like cars rather than appreciate like most homes.

In reply I received the following email from Kenneth R. Ross, Honey Brook Food Pantry Board Chairman, Honey Brook.

“I would like to commend you, Carol, and the Tri County Record for the excellent article run on Jan. 22, providing details on the opportunity for lowering tax bills for homeowners.

During our bi-weekly food distribution yesterday at the Honey Brook Food Pantry, several families approached us expressing a desire to "sign up" for assistance in reducing school and property taxes. Without their own email capabilities, they are unable to thank you directly.

At the pantry, we continue to appreciate the information the Tri-County Record provides about our work in the Honey Brook area,” writes Ross.

Following up I discovered that three individuals spoke out in addition to others signing up, creating a new list for Randy and Debbie Blough.

The deadline to apply for Homestead Exclusion is March 1. If a homeowner’s application is accepted, a portion of the property’s assessed value is exempt from the property tax, thus lowering the overall tax bill. The state is then responsible for the difference between the two amounts, using proceeds from gambling revenue to pay the balance, according to Rep. Ryan Mackenzie.

We will continue to address issues of community interest in this column. This is your public forum through the Tri County Record to have your voices be heard. I especially want to reach out to school teachers and group leaders to inform me of topics that are concerning or just new trends that are evolving in our area. The paper is open to the thoughts and ideas of all. In the past we have had school teaches inspire topics and have each individual student go on the record, or organizations have expressed their group’s experiences with problems and experiences with social media, business, etc. Please email me or respond to our Facebook Page Berks-Mont News. All individual submissions must include name and town for publication. Our editor reserves the right to omit submissions.

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