No changes to Lancaster boat tax this year

There will be no changes in the tax levy for Lancaster County recreational boaters until at least next year. County Supervisors in July formed a citizen committee to review the tax rate after complaints from boat owners who said that the much higher than that of surrounding counties. Officials now say there is not enough time to review the levy, and make recommendations before the August 1 deadline for sending out tax bills.

The tax rate came under fire at a June 19th public hearing when dozens of residents complained that the Lancaster rate was the highest of any of the surrounding counties, which they say hurts the economy, as boat owners move their boats to other counties with lower tax levies. They complained that it also hurts local shops and restaurants. The rate of $1.52 per of 100 dollars of assessed value was also cited as a reason for struggling marinas, and was blamed for jobs losses in the maintenance and repair sectors.

County officials say that while the tax rate may seem higher in Lancaster, a direct comparison is difficult because most of the counties that it was compared to use tax different criteria to calculate the levy.