Property taxes long have been the bane of Pennsylvania homeowners, especially seniors.
The Legislature, for a generation or more, has wrestled with the issue and again is facing a budget battle in which Gov. Wolf is calling for tax swaps to reduce property taxes.
So it seems like a good time to compare our state's burden with other states.
Wallet Hub, an online personal finance resource, uses U.S. Census data to rank all states and the District of Columbia in terms of average property taxes owed.
Spoiler alert: we pay above the national average.
With 1 being the lowest tax and (counting D.C.) 51 the highest, Pennsylvania ranks 39th with an average tax of $2,597. The national average is $2,089.
The five highest states? Well, the biggest payer's a neighbor
New Jersey, $3,971; Illinois, $3,939; New Hampshire, $3,649; Wisconsin, $3,398; Texas, $3,327.
Lowest states? Can you say "aloha?"
Hawaii, $482; Alabama, $752; Louisiana, $832; Delaware, $917; South Carolina, $984.
You can read all the rankings and average taxes here.
(Oh, and not to suggest that Congress takes care of any members or staff owning property in D.C., but the district is sixth lowest at $1,001.)
If there's any solace for Pennsylvania it's that we are among 27 states that do not also have a vehicle property tax on cars, trucks, boats, etc.
The average such tax in Rhode Island tops $1,000 annually in addition to that state's 42nd rank in real property tax at $2,779.