Governor’s Budget Plan Would Increase Local Tax Burden

Information provided by Rep. David Millard

The House Appropriations Committee last week launched a website which provides information on how the Commonwealth’s taxpayers in each school district would fare under Gov. Tom Wolf’s proposed property tax shift plan. If fully implemented, the governor’s plan would raise $8 billion in new taxes by 2016-17, but put only $3.6 billion toward property tax relief. The website shows that taxpayers in approximately 400 of the state’s 500 districts would pay more in personal income and sales taxes than they would receive in property tax relief.

The plan, as proposed, would negatively impact every taxpayer in Columbia and Montour counties. The following is the estimated net impact in the area’s school districts.

•    Benton Area School District: $179,776 in additional taxes.
•    Berwick Area School District: $825,471 in additional taxes.
•    Bloomsburg Area School District: $3,118,377 in additional taxes.
•    Central Columbia School District: $3,732,331 in additional taxes.
*    Danville Area School District: $6,377,761 in additional taxes.
•    Millville Area School District: $812,686 in additional taxes.
•    Southern Columbia Area School District: $2,499,332 in additional taxes.

Chamber President Fred Gaffney participated in a conference call with chambers from across Pennsylvania last week to continue the discussion of Gov. Wolf’s budget proposals. Among the concerns are audacious tax increases and revenue projections in the face of weak economic growth, and the lack of any reform to the public pension systems. A policy statement on the Governor’s plan is being developed.