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Tax

NEWS
October 4, 2014 | By Andrew Seidman, Inquirer Trenton Bureau
TRENTON A New Jersey legislative panel on Thursday advanced a bill that would prohibit the state from awarding contracts or incentives to companies that reincorporate overseas for the purpose of avoiding U.S. taxes. The move comes as the federal government has sought to crack down on so-called inversions, in which companies restructure abroad without moving their headquarters. A number of U.S. companies, such as Burger King, in recent months have moved to buy firms in other countries so they can incorporate there and lower their tax bills in the U.S. This practice "does our whole economic structure a disservice," Assemblyman Troy Singleton (D., Burlington)
NEWS
September 29, 2014 | By Suzette Parmley, Inquirer Staff Writer
ATLANTIC CITY - At 66, Audrey Williams is looking for a job to pay the property taxes on the Northside duplex she has owned for 14 years. Although she retired last New Year's Eve after 33 years as a dealer at Resorts and Showboat, recent events are forcing her back to work. Ironically, the casino industry that supported her for more than three decades is shrinking, and causing a severe revenue shortfall for the city. The burgeoning deficit, between what the city used to get from the casinos in property taxes, and what it can extract today with just eight instead of 12 gambling halls, as well as casino tax appeals that have resulted in more than $350 million in refunds by the city, is being passed on to its residents.
BUSINESS
September 27, 2014 | By Andrew Maykuth, Inquirer Staff Writer
PITTSBURGH - Former Gov. Tom Ridge believes Pennsylvania will adopt a natural gas severance tax. "I think there will wind up being a severance tax in this state," Ridge told a gas-industry conference Thursday. "Just my feeling. " Ridge's comments came a few minutes before Gov. Corbett, a fellow Republican whose reelection effort has been lagging in the polls, took the stage at the Shale Insight conference at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center. Corbett has staunchly opposed a severance tax, saying it might retard the industry's growth, despite polls showing strong popular support for a levy on gas production.
NEWS
September 26, 2014 | BY JAMES BUEHLER, M.D. AND DONALD F. SCHWARZ, M.D., MPH
  MORE THAN 500,000 Philadelphians have been regular smokers at some point in their lives. Approximately half have quit smoking. The other half continue to smoke. "I started smoking when I was twelve," said Susan McTamney, a former City of Philadelphia employee. "I stole my first cigarette off my sister. I smoked for 36 years . . . 4 packs per day for the last 15 years of my smoking habit. " Yet most smokers don't want to be smokers. In fact, nine out of ten regret having ever started smoking, and the majority have tried to quit in the past year.
NEWS
September 26, 2014 | BY SOLOMON LEACH, Daily News Staff Writer leachs@phillynews.com, 215-854-5903
THE ROLLER COASTER week for Philadelphia public schools continued yesterday with some good and bad news. Gov. Corbett signed a bill authorizing a Philadelphia cigarette tax to provide key funds for the distressed district, ending months of uncertainty and suspense. The tax will be implemented Oct. 1 and is expected to generate approximately $49 million this school year. Less than an hour later, the district announced that scores declined on the 2014 Pennsylvania System of School Assessment for the third straight year.
NEWS
September 26, 2014 | By Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG - Gov. Corbett on Wednesday signed the bill that authorizes Philadelphia to impose a $2-a-pack tax on cigarettes to help raise money for the city's cash-starved schools. "For the first time while in Harrisburg, I'm smiling," School Superintendent William R. Hite Jr. said. The signing follows months of wrangling in the GOP-controlled legislature, with some of its more conservative members resisting allowing the city to increase the levy. Corbett, a Republican, said legislators in both parties came together to bridge those differences.
NEWS
September 25, 2014 | BY SOLOMON LEACH, Daily News Staff Writer leachs@phillynews.com, 215-854-5903
PHILADELPHIA School District officials breathed a sigh of relief yesterday as a local cigarette tax - $2 per pack to provide key funding for schools - cleared the final hurdle in Harrisburg after months of suspense. The state Senate approved the bill, 39-11, one day after lawmakers in the House passed it. It heads to Gov. Corbett, who is expected to sign it publicly today. The tax is expected to generate at least $49 million this school year for the embattled district, erasing a sizable deficit and averting massive layoffs.
NEWS
September 25, 2014 | By Maria Panaritis and Allison Steele, Inquirer Staff Writers
The cigarette tax approved by Pennsylvania lawmakers Tuesday will soon make a pack of $6.65 Newports cost $2 more at the corner store that Hanif Woods patronizes in West Philadelphia. But don't think for a minute that he or his friends will bother hustling to the nearby county line for a price break. Even with the promise of much lower prices in the suburbs - a short drive from Jesly Food Market at 60th Street and Girard Avenue - the 24-year-old Woods didn't expect his shopping habits to change when the levy goes into effect.
NEWS
September 25, 2014 | By Amy Worden and Kristen A. Graham, Inquirer Staff Writers
HARRISBURG - The state Senate late Tuesday approved a bill authorizing the City of Philadelphia to impose a $2-a-pack tax on cigarettes, ending months of wrangling over revenue to plug a deepening hole in the School District budget. Gov. Corbett said he would sign the bill Wednesday. The price hike could take affect in a week or so. "I am pleased that both chambers have taken action on this legislation so that the Philadelphia School District and, more importantly, the students of Philadelphia can benefit from it," he said in a statement.
NEWS
September 24, 2014 | By Angela Couloumbis, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
  HARRISBURG - In what essentially was a warm-up for Monday's gubernatorial debate, Democratic candidate Tom Wolf found himself playing defense on some of his key campaign positions. Speaking before a packed crowd at the monthly Pennsylvania press club luncheon Monday, Wolf reiterated his position that he would boost education funding through a 5 percent tax on the extraction of natural gas from the Marcellus Shale. But he found himself having to explain his position on other issues, namely his idea of replacing the state's across-the-board personal income tax with a graduated tax. Wolf, a wealthy businessman from York, said he believes that would ease the tax burden on the middle class and shift the burden to wealthier taxpayers.
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