ART MORRIS: “Is a $10.3 million tax break fair to Lancaster residents?”

Letter to the Editor by former Lancaster mayor Art Morris

Art Morris

Art Morris

About 10 years ago, Lancaster Newspapers (LNP) and High Associates (High) were given an estimated $43.8 million property tax break to build the downtown Marriott Hotel.

Now they want to expand and build an adjoining Marriott Tower. The city is planning to give them, under a state economic development program administered though a city agency, a $5.7 million grant, and, as an added incentive, another $10.3 million property tax break.

Is this fair? Is it fair to other businesses, like the Arts’ Hotel and Hotel Lancaster, who are not getting these same property tax breaks?

Is it fair to the city property owners who are asked every year to pay higher school, city or county real estate taxes, only to hear services need to be cut for lack of funding?

I’m encouraging you to attend the City Council meeting on Tuesday, October 11 at 7:30 pm, in the Council Chambers, City Hall Annex, (Marion Street entrance) 120 N. Duke Street, Lancaster. This real estate tax forgiveness/subsidy is part of a Public Hearing under item VII and Ordinance 10 under item IX A.

Please take a moment to visit my website that provides details on this issue.

If you have any friends or colleagues who might appreciate learning about the Marriott Tower Expansion plan — and the taxpayer subsidy — please click the “Send To A Friend” button below.

Thank you!


Art Morris

Updated: October 8, 2016 — 10:30 am


  1. Stop throwing public money at this cow. We will never get large convention’s to Lancaster. The Amish are just not that big a draw. You built something you said would lose money. Now you want more to lose more

  2. Kudos to you for speaking out!

  3. I’ll be going.

  4. Glad someone is speaking out about this. The streets in Lancaster city are in dire need of repair. Money should be spent to fix them, not more tax breaks for Dale high.

  5. No more tax breaks or favors for Mr. High.

    The city has so many infrastructure issues that are mishandled by an out of touch PW director. She needs to go. How much money was wasted on the brick crosswalks that have been creating traffic nightmares in the city?

    Nothing is coordinated. The citizens and visitors suffer as money is not focused on immediate needs [and] given away in the form of tax breaks that are not equally applied.

    Maybe Mr. Morris should run for Mayor again and fix this mess.

  6. And what’s with all the frivolous spending on brick crosswalks? Really? You could have stamped and dyed the macadam for less with the same visual effect.

    And for the love of God, send Detour Debbie the inept public works director packing. The lack of coordination of streets projects is evident and we suffer through the endless detours, road restrictions, lane changes, etc. Simply pathetic

  7. Lancaster doesn’t even invite musicians to the city. Thanx to the Santander in Reading do u ever get to see any interesting entertainers.

  8. Life ain’t always fair Artie. This project has done more for the city than all the small ones combined.

  9. Anonymous comments have zero credibility.

    EDITOR: Most comments received contain the name of the writer. It is NewsLanc’s policy not to publish the names, in part due to concerns over liability should we be tricked.

    Also by promising anonymity, we remove the concern of potential contributors of retribution from job,customers the Establishment and also offending friends and acquaintances.

    Of course you are correct to take anonymity into account.

  10. Don’t get me started again. We questioned this among other tax breaks….i.e. Tiff…a decade ago.

  11. NO, it is NOT fair. It’s kiss-ass politics like usual in Lancaster. Time to REPLACE the political machine. ONE MONTH.

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