Community forum to pressure Penn to make payments to the city

Friday, May 30, 2014

A coalition of more than 40 city groups plan to rachet up pressure on the University of Pennsylvania to begin making payments to the city in lieu of taxes — starting with a public forum on Saturday.

Philadelphia Jobs With Justice, made up of labor unions, community and student groups and faith-based congregations, has targeted Penn - which like other non-profits is largely exempt from paying property taxes - because it’s the city’s largest private employer and touts its role as a lead community partner, said Gwen Snyder (no relation to this writer), the group’s executive director.

“We feel that Penn should become a leader on PILOTS (Payment in Lieu of Taxes) and start giving back,” she said, adding that the group also would like to see other universities and exempt groups give, too.

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