FEATURED ARTICLES
NEWS
May 9, 2015 | By Tricia L. Nadolny, Inquirer Staff Writer
Rentals through Airbnb, the online marketplace where people can list their homes for short-term stays, could soon be taxed in Philadelphia. The Nutter administration is making the push ahead of the September visit of Pope Francis, when home rentals are expected to be in high demand. "People are bringing in money on this and, at least in the pope's visit, bringing in a decent amount of money," said City Councilman William K. Greenlee, who introduced a bill Thursday on behalf of the Nutter administration to regulate and tax short-term rentals.
NEWS
January 9, 2012
With a first-year record like Gov. Corbett's, it's a good thing he still has three more years to go. Or maybe not. Another three years could give Corbett time to make some progress, at least, toward pressing issues facing the state - like fixing roads and bridges, or making natural-gas drillers pay their fair share. There even may be time to do something about handgun violence that tragically ends hundreds of Pennsylvanians' lives annually (were the governor not such a gun-rights stalwart)
NEWS
March 11, 2012 | By Jan Hefler, Inquirer Staff Writer
  There's budget trouble in Medford, an affluent Norman Rockwell suburb with two newly renovated fire halls, respected schools, and a variety of lush parks. Despite the recent economic turmoil and the township's apparently insatiable demand for amenities, its tax rate stayed flat from 2006 to 2010 and went up only slightly last year. And that is precisely why the Burlington County community now faces a financial emergency, say leaders of the five-member, all-Republican Town Council and a chorus of budget experts.
NEWS
March 11, 2010
MAYOR NUTTER is constantly crying poor and trying to charge taxpayers more fees or provide fewer services. His new plan is to charge a weekly trash fee to help the city raise needed funds. Then, in the same day's paper is an article on Nutter appointing a former city official to a position heading the Office of Economic Opportunity. In plain English, this position is aimed at getting 25 percent of all city contracts to go to minority- or female-owned businesses. But the real kicker is that her salary will be $135,000.
NEWS
September 1, 1990
For a country that's short of cash and repelled by Wall Street greed, this proposal sounds like a winner: Tax the sale of stocks and bonds. At a penny for every $2 worth of securities, such a levy would bring in about $12 billion a year. And it would fall most heavily on the fast-buck artists who buy and sell securities for speculative gain, not long-term investment. Or so the pitch goes. Unfortunately, even though the tax sounds small, it probably would jolt financial markets.
NEWS
May 15, 2011 | By Dan Hardy and John P. Martin, Inquirer Staff Writers
Facing what some see as the most dire funding crisis in decades, school districts across the region are proposing cuts that could drastically reshape their programs and communities. In district after district, officials have proposed budgets notable for what's missing: busing, kindergarten, athletics, librarians, languages, gym classes. Thousands of area school employees are likely to lose jobs, even as taxes in their districts rise. "This is unlike anything we've seen in the last 50 years," said Lou DeVlieger, superintendent of Upper Darby School District, which plans to cut 47 jobs, draw $4 million from reserves, and raise taxes 2.7 percent.
NEWS
May 14, 2015 | By Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG - Two measures dealing with issues that are key to any state budget deal - property taxes and pensions - began moving through the legislature Tuesday, with lawmakers pushing for swift action on both. The House began debate on a multibillion-dollar property-tax relief measure whose prospects are uncertain, while the Senate is poised to vote on a Republican-backed proposal to rein in the cost of public-employee pensions. Both bills are up for final passage Wednesday, after which legislators will break until June, when budget talks with Gov. Wolf will begin in earnest.
NEWS
April 12, 2010
MANY have debated the mayor's proposed sugar-sweetened beverage tax, but it would be illegal. Pennsylvania law specifically bans the city from taxing an item that the state already taxes. As anyone who's picked up a six-pack of soda in a supermarket knows, Pennsylvania taxes ALL soft drinks at 6 percent, sugar sweetened or not. Like the state sales tax, the proposed sugar tax would fall on the consumer. If this tax were enacted, we'd pay separate taxes on the same item. In fact, the city designed this tax to fall on the consumer, claiming the goal is to change buying behavior.
NEWS
August 24, 2010 | By Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writer
Philadelphia was once again the subject of head-scratching and ridicule on Monday, this time with the "blog tax" controversy. On BuzzFeed, a popular website for stories, photos, and video competing to go viral, "Philadelphia Blogger's License: $300" was in the running, in between videos of a bored cat having a birthday party and Lady Gaga dancing at a Kiss concert. New York magazine's website weighed in, as did the Washington Post's. The New York Daily News had a story about "Cash-strapped Philly" resorting to a blog "tax.
NEWS
January 4, 1990 | By Brigette ReDavid, Special to The Inquirer
Narberth's 1990 operating budget of about $1.5 million will require no tax increase after all. According to borough manager William Martin, the 3.28-mill tax increase that had been proposed was offset by unanticipated revenue, including a grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development to pick up 75 percent of the $80,000 estimated cost of renovating and building an addition to the borough library. Martin said the borough also received about $80,000 not originally figured into the proposed 1990 budget in reimbursement for compensation pay for a police officer out of work since 1984.
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ARTICLES BY DATE
BUSINESS
May 18, 2015 | By Harold Brubaker, Inquirer Staff Writer
Brownstein Group and Vault Communications are in similar businesses: advertising and public relations, which means their success depends largely on people - who can set up shop anywhere. Brownstein is in Center City, while Vault is in Plymouth Meeting, and the tax consequences of their locations separate them far more than the 19 miles between their offices. Vault pays a business privilege tax of 0.15 percent and no local net income tax in Plymouth Township. Brownstein's tax bill in Philadelphia includes a 6.45 percent corporate income tax, a 0.1415 percent gross receipts tax, a 1.13 percent use and occupancy tax, and a 2 percent city sales tax. That heavier tax burden, coupled with the Philadelphia wage tax that is nearly four times higher than the average in the suburbs, has long handicapped the city's job growth.
NEWS
May 17, 2015 | By Angelo Fichera, Inquirer Staff Writer
A Pennsauken printing and packaging firm will receive $34 million in tax credits to relocate to and expand in neighboring Camden. Approved Friday morning, the deal for Contemporary Graphic Solutions is another by the New Jersey Economic Development Authority to help bring economic activity to the city. The company plans to also spend about $7.5 million in capital investment and add 56 full-time positions to its current staff of 170, according to a project summary with the agency.
NEWS
May 15, 2015 | By Angela Couloumbis and Jessica Parks, Inquirer Staff Writers
HARRISBURG - Legislators cast key votes Wednesday on two bills that will set the tone for budget negotiations with Gov. Wolf in the coming weeks. Within hours of each other, the Republican-controlled House approved a property-tax reform measure, while the GOP-dominated Senate passed legislation to rein in the cost of public employee pensions. Legislative leaders called the votes historic - but the reality is more nuanced. The bills now swap chambers, with the property-tax measure heading to the Senate for consideration and the pension bill going to the House.
NEWS
May 14, 2015 | By Maddie Hanna, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
MANCHESTER, N.H. - Gov. Christie attacked President Obama's economic record while calling for lower income and corporate tax rates during a speech Tuesday, the latest installment in a push to gain presidential ground in the first-in-the-nation primary state. Christie, who also called for a less restrictive approach to government regulation and a national energy strategy that would include completion of the Keystone XL pipeline, said the Democratic president's "high-tax, heavy-regulation" policies were responsible for a slow economic recovery that has taken a particular toll on the middle class.
NEWS
May 14, 2015 | By Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG - Two measures dealing with issues that are key to any state budget deal - property taxes and pensions - began moving through the legislature Tuesday, with lawmakers pushing for swift action on both. The House began debate on a multibillion-dollar property-tax relief measure whose prospects are uncertain, while the Senate is poised to vote on a Republican-backed proposal to rein in the cost of public-employee pensions. Both bills are up for final passage Wednesday, after which legislators will break until June, when budget talks with Gov. Wolf will begin in earnest.
NEWS
May 11, 2015 | By Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG - Pension reform and property-tax relief are two issues on which state legislators and governors have spent years trying to reach consensus. Now, they will attempt to do so in less than two months. This week, both issues will take center stage in the Capitol as the Republican-controlled legislature tries to solidify its negotiating position on two issues pivotal to any budget deal. Senate leaders plan a vote on a comprehensive but controversial proposal to change future pension benefits and increase contributions from current employees.
NEWS
May 9, 2015 | By Allison Steele, Inquirer Staff Writer
New Jersey State Sen. Raymond J. Lesniak (D., Union) introduced a bill Thursday that would freeze corporate tax-break programs until the state could produce reports assessing how effective they have been at creating jobs and growing the local economy. Lesniak said the legislation would create more transparency surrounding the $5 billion in tax incentives that the state's Economic Development Authority (EDA) has given in recent years to companies, many of which have been awarded the credits in exchange for relocating to Camden and other struggling cities.
NEWS
May 9, 2015 | By Andrew Seidman, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
TRENTON - New Jersey Senate President Stephen Sweeney introduced legislation Thursday that would raise the marginal tax rate on income above $1 million, a measure he said would help fund the pension system, but one that almost certainly will be vetoed by Gov. Christie. Sweeney (D., Gloucester) also proposed increasing a tax credit for the poor. Christie, a Republican, cut that credit in 2010 amid a budget shortfall. "No one likes to increase any tax," Sweeney said in a statement, "and it would not be necessary to do so if New Jersey did not rank near the bottom in economic, revenue, and job growth under the Christie administration.
NEWS
May 9, 2015 | By Tricia L. Nadolny, Inquirer Staff Writer
Rentals through Airbnb, the online marketplace where people can list their homes for short-term stays, could soon be taxed in Philadelphia. The Nutter administration is making the push ahead of the September visit of Pope Francis, when home rentals are expected to be in high demand. "People are bringing in money on this and, at least in the pope's visit, bringing in a decent amount of money," said City Councilman William K. Greenlee, who introduced a bill Thursday on behalf of the Nutter administration to regulate and tax short-term rentals.
NEWS
May 8, 2015 | BY WENDY RUDERMAN, Daily News Staff Writer rudermw@phillynews.com, 215-854-5924
PHILADELPHIA homeowners are making money - in some cases, thousands of dollars a year - by renting out rooms and apartments for short-term stays on websites like Airbnb and VRBO. And the city wants its cut. Councilman at-large Bill Greenlee, at the behest of Mayor Nutter, introduced legislation yesterday that would levy the city's existing 8.5 percent hotel tax on rental income earned by homeowners. The bill comes as the city prepares to welcome the masses for the 2015 World Meeting of Families.
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