Center for Taxes & Fiscal Responsibility
The Center for Taxes & Fiscal Responsibility works to reduce the size, scope, and “tax-take” of state government; restore the government sector to its proper and limited role in our lives; and make government more open, transparent, and accountable to citizens.
Lawmakers and Gov. Wolf should approve emergency funding to keep Pennsylvania’s most vulnerable residents from suffering needlessly over the holidays.
After nearly five months of gridlock, a new state budget framework was announced this week. At this point, it’s tempting to call any progress on budget agreement a victory, but is this tentative framework truly a “win” for Pennsylvanians?
Pennsylvanians may soon pay more for nearly everything they buy. Under the latest proposed budget deal, state sales taxes would jump from 6 percent to 7.25 percent—giving Pennsylvania the second-highest statewide sales tax in the nation.
The latest state budget rumors describe a deal to increase the sales tax to provide corresponding property tax relief. Rather than a “dollar-for-dollar” tax shift, this plan would actually increase taxes on all Pennsylvanians by $600 million.
Today, the state Senate attempted to send schools much-needed funding by overriding Gov. Wolf’s Sept. 29 stopgap budget veto. The vote fell three votes short, but as public sentiment and members of his own party turn against him, Wolf has become increasingly irrelevant in the budget debate.
During 100-plus days of the state budget impasse, Wolf’s words and actions have been consistently inconsistent, leaving taxpayers reeling and Pennsylvania in budget limbo.
Critical transparency and accountability measures pending in the state Legislature gained overwhelming public support in a poll released today by the Commonwealth Foundation.
Nearly 100 days since the budget deadline, Governor Wolf had proposed three separate tax increase plans—each the largest tax hike in the nation. But when Wolf stepped up to the plate on Wednesday and choked up for one last swing, he whiffed—strike three was called on his tax plans.
Wednesday’s vote on Gov. Wolf’s tax scheme was latest in a long line of political gimmicks aimed at reeling-in Wolf’s white whale: paradigm-shifting tax increases on Pennsylvania families and small businesses.
This spring, Governor Wolf swung for the fences with a $1,400-per-family-of-four tax hike; in September he whiffed at a $1,000 increase; today, after choking up for a $750 rise, Governor Wolf has struck out.
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