Pa. lawmaker proposes change in local taxing emphasis

    A Pennsylvania House lawmaker is plugging his own approach to property tax reform this fall.

    Rep. Seth Grove, R-York, is calling for giving local governments the power to choose to freeze property taxes in favor of a levy on income taxes.

    But he acknowledges it’s still possible the status quo would be maintained.

    “If people want the change, they obviously can run for school board and initiate it themselves as well,” Grove said. “So it provides that local discussion of, ‘What do we want our local taxes to look like? Do we still want it on the basis of property taxes, or do we want to change it over to income tax?'”

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    Grove’s proposal would also allow counties to institute a sales tax and put the revenue toward reducing property levies, if voters approved it through a referendum.

    He’s hoping his suggestions win the support of a special committee expected to deliver several reform-minded recommendations to the House at the end of November.

    If the proposal were made law, it would not apply to the city of Philadelphia, which has a special tax code all its own.

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