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Rally For Property Tax Reform Set For Tuesday Sept. 24th at the State Capitol in Harrisburg
September 24, 2013- Don Rooney 
HARRISBURG- Thousands are expected to rally at the state Capitol in Harrisburg on Tuesday in favor of legislation pending in both the Senate and House to reform property taxes in Pennsylvania. Senate Bill 76, which Senator Yudichak is a co-sponsor, is the so-called "Property Tax Independence Act." (The House has a similar bill, House Bill 76.) The proposal would eliminate all school property taxes across the Commonwealth and would replace those taxes with a combination of funding from the Personal Income Tax and the Sales and Use Tax.

According to the bill's sponsors, the revenue replacement mechanism in this act will broaden the base of the state sales tax to include more services and products as well as increase the state sales tax from 6 percent to 7 percent. Necessities such as food and clothing and business-to-business transactions will continue to be exempt from the sales tax.

According to an analysis compiled by the Independent Fiscal Office, the sales tax changes would generate almost two-thirds of the revenue needed. The remainder of the funding necessary for our public schools would be generated by an increase in the stateís personal income tax from 3.07 percent to 4.34 percent. Transition to this new system would take place via a two year phase-in period. The first year, school property taxes would be frozen at their current level and in the second year they would be completely eliminated except for a small portion that will be retained in each school district to retire the individual districtís outstanding long-term debt.

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