A House subcommittee heard today about the federal program under which local governments are paid for lost property tax revenues on non-taxable federally-owned lands in their jurisdictions. The Payment in Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program was established in 1976 and is set to expire in September of next year.
Subcommittee Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) called the hearing to focus on the history of PILT, the formula for allocating PILT payments and the impact federal land management decisions have on surrounding communities. Committee Republicans say the Obama Administration's "wilderness agenda" unfairly restricts use of federal lands by public and private entities.
The PILT program is intended to compensate local governments for lost property tax revenues on non-taxable federally-owned land. County budgets are drafted with the expectation that they will receive these funds on time, so local governments can pay for programs like road construction, schools, local law enforcement and fire departments.