Substantial revenue can come from varied gaming options, oversight chairman says

One thing agreed to by budget negotiators after Wednesday’s “new reality” following the defeat of Gov. Tom Wolf’s revenue plan is that lawmakers are going to have to think outside the box in order to come up with revenue sources that can shift Pennsylvania away from its current trend of budget deficits.

A source listed by both parties as being on the table for potential revenue is gaming, where rumblings about expanded gaming options and state reforms to make casinos more profitable—and thereby a larger revenue source for the Commonwealth—have been going on for the last two fiscal years.

“[We] have talked about, and I think there’s bipartisan support for, increasing gaming revenues,” said House Speaker Mike Turzai (R-Allegheny) after Wednesday’s vote. “I know those are items people are looking for discussion on.”

When asked about gaming at a press conference Wednesday, Gov. Wolf said “these are all part of the options moving forward.”

“We have to be open to everything,” he said. “There is a recognition we have a big budget deficit we have to bridge.”

But where in gaming does that money come from and what do the revenues look like?

Thursday, October 8, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
Budget Impasse Day 99: Sides see revenue plan rejection vote very differently

Budget Impasse Day 99: Sides see revenue plan rejection vote very differently

Maybe there was something in the air Wednesday.

While the House of Representatives spent nearly seven hours debating Gov. Tom Wolf’s revenue proposal, a prominent lobbyist and a Hollywood actor got into a heated verbal tussle.

Tensions that had been running high since last week when Republican leaders said they would give the governor free reign to try to get as many votes as he could for a revenue plan he would timely submit came to a head when that plan was defeated with 127 votes opposing the measure, including nine put up by Democratic lawmakers.

Following the vote, leaders from both parties responsible for negotiating the budget saw that final vote in dramatically different ways.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
VIDEO: "This vote actually gives us a real shot at balancing our budget" says Wolf after House votes down budget proposal

VIDEO: "This vote actually gives us a real shot at balancing our budget" says Wolf after House votes down budget proposal

Gov. Tom Wolf and House Democratic leadership held a press conference after the House defeated Wolf's budget proposal to discuss what they hope to do next. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015/Author: Alanna Koll
Tags:
VIDEO: Actor and advocate Mark Ruffalo pushes for fracking moratorium in Pennsylvania

VIDEO: Actor and advocate Mark Ruffalo pushes for fracking moratorium in Pennsylvania

Mark Ruffalo was joined by grassroots organizations today in the Main Capitol Rotunda to deliver petitions and a letter to Gov. Tom Wolf calling on the governor to enact a moratorium on fracking. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015/Author: Alanna Koll
Tags:

Revised revenue plan still a tough decision for moderate Republicans

As the details of Gov. Tom Wolf’s revised revenue plan were made public Tuesday, Republicans—even some moderates who could potentially be in favor of some broad-based revenue increases—were still skeptical.

The new revenue plan, which is embodied in an amendment sponsored by House Appropriations Committee Minority Chairman Joe Markosek (D-Allegheny) to House Bill 283, proposes to raise $3.6 billion over the next two fiscal years by relying heavily on increasing the personal income tax to 3.57 percent and placing a 3.5 percent tax on natural gas extraction.

The proposal would also increase the property tax forgiveness provision costing $195 million over two years while also making a transfer of $5 million to the Property Tax and Rent Rebate Program in FY 2016-2017.

According to House Democrats and the Wolf administration, the expanded Property Tax and Rent Rebate Program will provide $400 million in new property tax relief to seniors, the disabled, and veterans beginning in FY 2017-2018, resulting in the elimination of property taxes for 331,317 households, including over 247,000 new eliminations.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015/Author: Jason Gottesman
Categories: News and Views
RSS
First507508509510511512513514515516Last