Pa. House GOP to unveil plan for trimming school property taxes

    Six redistricting measures now await House floor consideration — though Pennsylvania GOP Leader Dave Reed said the most likely bill will be one the Senate passed last week.
(AP, file)

    Six redistricting measures now await House floor consideration — though Pennsylvania GOP Leader Dave Reed said the most likely bill will be one the Senate passed last week. (AP, file)

    The Republican-controlled state House will press ahead with a plan to reduce school property taxes across Pennsylvania in the coming weeks.

    GOP Majority Leader Dave Reed said members want to see average local property taxes reduced by 40 to 60 percent. The plan in the works would raise sales and personal income taxes, but Reed said would not cost taxpayers more money.

    “We will not be using these dollars for additional spending at the state level,” said Reed during a conference call with reporters. “They will be used to reduce local school property taxes.”

    Gov. Tom Wolf’s budget proposal includes property tax relief he says would target poor areas with high property tax burdens. The plan has taken a lot of hits from Republicans since its unveiling in early March.

    Some criticized the fact that it was merely reducing, and not eliminating, property taxes. Reed said the plan in the works now won’t necessarily eliminate property taxes.

    Some took issue with Wolf’s proposal to get rid of many of the sales tax exemptions enjoyed by things such as dry cleaning, funeral services, and candy. A spokesman for the House GOP said the proposal under discussion is subject to change, but it would not broaden the sales tax to new items.

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