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John's Public Policy Blog
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Fees, taxes, and PILOTs in the City of Wilmington

Posted By John Baker, Monday, April 08, 2013

This morning, DANA CEO Chris Grundner and I met with Wilmington Mayor Williams’ Chief Strategy Advisor Velda Jones-Potter, and Chief of Staff John Matlusky. We requested the meeting as part of DANA’s Public Policy Agenda. We went there to voice our concerns about the city possibly imposing fees, taxes, or PILOTs (Payments In Lieu of Taxes) on nonprofits. Such fees have been mentioned by the Mayor as a source of revenue in Wilmington. Our position on the matter remains that we are against the imposition of fees, taxes, or PILOTs being imposed on nonprofits.

We have seen the topic of fees on nonprofits come up in years past, and they have been successfully defeated. DANA is closely watching as PILOTs are being considered in other cities around the nation, as all municipalities struggle through the current challenging economic conditions. The City of Wilmington and Delaware nonprofits alike are struggling with the same challenging economic conditions, as nonprofits aim to meet the demands of the increasing numbers of clients in need.

By maintaining an ongoing engagement with the mayor’s office, we anticipate a successful outcome from this current round of discussions regarding fees, taxes, and PILOTs. Wilmington’s Mayor Williams and his staff understand the value of the nonprofit sector and recognize us as key partners in city services. They understand that any imposition of fees will only limit our ability to address the needs of Wilmingtonians.

Chris and I left the meeting this morning with a secure understanding that there will be no fees, taxes, or PILOTs in the proposed budget for 2013 through 2014, and that Wilmington has no plan to move forward with any such imposition without thoroughly engaging Wilmington nonprofits in the discussion. In coordination with the mayor’s office, DANA will be forming a representative working-group of nonprofit leaders to meet with the mayor, his staff, and City Council representatives in the coming summer months. The focus of this group will be to gain a thorough understanding of the sector, and an aligned course going forward.

I will keep you posted with any developments. In the meantime, I may reach out to some of you to serve as representatives of the sector within this new working-group.

Thanks for reading! As always, feel free to reach out to me with any questions or comments.

-John

Tags:  fees  Mayor Williams  nonprofits  PILOTs  Public Policy  taxes  Wilmington 

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