PA-BGT: Wolf Submits Tax Plan to House

wolf-budget addressWith Gov. Tom Wolf knowing this could be his best chance to win the budget stalemate, he has scaled back some of his tax demands to try to pick up the votes he needs.

The Governor’s plans include a half-percent increase in the state’s personal income tax – bringing it to 3.57% – and a 3.5% severance tax on natural gas drilling, but Wolf notably left out some of the taxes he has been arguing for over the last three months since vetoing a GOP-crafted budget.

There will be no sales tax increase under Wolf’s latest plan, and the state will not expand the list of goods and services they can collect sales tax on. Wolf also dropped his insistence on a $1 tax for every pack of cigarettes sold in PA, according to Mark Scolforo of the Associated Press.

The PA House of Representatives has scheduled a vote on the first-year governor’s plans for Wednesday, with Wolf needing to pick up 18 GOP members, provided all 84 Democrats vote for his plans.

To sweeten the pot for GOP legislators, Wolf’s plans eliminate property taxes for 216,000 seniors and 31,000 households with disabled residents.

The Wolf Administration predicts the revenue plans will raise $1.4 billion for the fiscal year that started 97 days ago, while bringing in $2.4 billion in 2016-17.

If Wolf’s plans pass in the House, Senate GOP leaders have promised to bring up the legislation in their chamber, Senate Republican spokeswoman Jennifer Kocher said, though “the votes don’t appear to exist.”

9 Responses

  1. Watching the PCN House debate now. Do you ever get the feeling we live in a medieval environment where the serfs are so ignorant that they and their leaders think, “Not MY problem.” So all the blame can just continue to pushed on the Democrats and the Republicans have NO responsibility to improve the situation. NOT THEIR PROBLEM, that’s what the Republicans are saying. It is astounding to me — now that PA and Indiana are the only two states without budgets — that this level of stupidity can continue to reside in those chambers in Harrisburg. There is never any higher level of thinking that is presented to SOLVE the structural problems….what a bunch of losers and what a bunch of whiners…and what a bunch misleaders. I can’t wait to leave.

  2. Observer…wolf’s 5% severance tax was supposed to bring in 1 billion dollars. That same 5% is now estimated to bring in 100 million…why…because the price of gas has fallen off the cliff from $4per McF a year ago to under a buck today. Maybe in a better economic climate the gop would be open to it. But why would they vote to impose a tax on top of the impact fee at the absolute worst time for the industry. Check, mate.

  3. His county Indiana is going thought property reassessment how and he has been very quiet about it. If he was for property tax relief he would be saying more about the issue. He is just putting his head in the sand and hoping it goes away. He was the 3rd highest in the state receiving gas producers campaign money. He is very much against a severance tax.

  4. Aaron

    You punted. Dave Reed is Exhibit No. 1 of being bought and paid for by the oil and gas industry. You obviously make my point… in your answer when talking about Reed you fail to mention his willingness to support a severance tax. I’m interested in the severance tax very much more so than the other two so let’s have Dave Reed accept and talk about that.

  5. Excuse me…I believe that gop floor leader Dave Reed has said numerous times that he would raise the sales tax and income taX rate to offset property taxes “dollar for dollar.” In fact after becoming majority leader, one of the first things he did was pass a bill in the house eliminating property taxes using this approach. His floor speech is up on his website right now in which he specifically makes this case. Educate yourself.

  6. The Republicans are NOT for property tax relief. They are only for tax relief when it comes to rich people… or oil and gas industry companies, who bring in out of state workers… and fill their campaign coffers. GOP reps bought and paid for.

    Their budget deficit days of Tommy Corbett are over and they should stop kicking the can down the road…

  7. No chance. Their constituents will eat them alive if they vote for an income tax hike that doesn’t affect property taxes for the people paying that income tax (i.e. Not seniors). This is dead on arrival.

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