Rendell suggests new taxes, fees to fill state budget gap

    Governor Ed Rendell has kicked off a special legislative session by urging lawmakers to address Pennsylvania’s funding gap.

    Governor Ed Rendell has kicked off a special legislative session by urging lawmakers to address Pennsylvania’s funding gap.

    The state had budgeted billions of dollars in revenue from I-80 tolls over the coming years, but the federal government recently rejected Pennsylvania’s tolling application.

    Governor Rendell is asking lawmakers to fill that budget gap with new revenue sources.

    “Make the oil companies pay a profits tax,” says Rendell. “Our oil companies together – they pump over 12 and a half billions of gallons of gasoline at the pump in Pennsylvania, and they pay less than $65 million in taxes. It’s a disgrace.”

    Rendell says leasing the Turnpike to a private company is another way to generate the money to repair Pennsylvania’s deficient roads and bridges.

    During his speech to a joint legislative session, Rendell said smaller-scale measures could generate transportation dollars, as well.

    He mentioned an increased gas tax and higher license and vehicle registration fees, as three suggestions.

    This is the third special session convened during the Rendell Administration.

    The last two focused on alternative energy and property tax relief.

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