Pa. House to amend cigarette-tax bill

Posted: July 31, 2014

WHEN HOUSE members return to Harrisburg on Monday to consider the cigarette-tax bill that would help fund Philly's schools, the legislation most likely will head to the Rules Committee, where it will be amended, a spokesman for the top Republican says.

Members of the committee plan to remove Community Revitalization Improvement Zone grants and a hotel tax from the bill, said Steve Miskin, spokesman for House Majority Leader Mike Turzai, R-Allegheny.

The $2-per-pack cigarette-tax bill would then be introduced on the floor for a vote. The legislation, if passed, would be sent back to the Senate for a vote.

Senate members are at the ready, said Erik Arneson, spokesman for the Senate Republicans.

"We have notified our members to be prepared for a possible voting session on Thursday, Aug. 7, in the event that the House takes action which requires further action by the Senate," Arneson wrote in an email last night. "We will make a final decision after the House acts."

City and school-district leaders have urged both chambers to pass the proposed tax, which would fund city schools to the tune of $45 million in its first year. The district is facing an $81 million budget shortfall.


On Twitter: @ReginaMedina

Online: ph.ly/DNEducation

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