IN THE NEWS

Tax

NEWS
June 27, 2016 | By Tricia L. Nadolny, Staff Writer
The word went out loudly when the votes were cast: Philadelphia's tax on sweetened drinks made history as the first of its kind enacted by a major U.S. city. But the vote also was extraordinary in a quieter way - a rare example of City Council navigating a contentious issue without Council President Darrell L. Clarke squarely behind the wheel. Instead, new Council members formed their own allegiances. Old members strengthened their bonds with outsiders and with Mayor Kenney. And Clarke, it seemed to many in City Hall, wound up in the backseat, voting for a tax he has always professed to hate after seeing it could pass without his support.
NEWS
June 26, 2016 | By Laura McCrystal, STAFF WRITER
If you live in Cheltenham but work across Montgomery County in Lansdale, like a good neighbor Lansdale sends your earned income tax back to Cheltenham. Not so if you commute to Philadelphia. The city keeps all 3.5 percent of the city wage tax paid by non-residents. That's a hit on tax revenue elsewhere, local officials say – to the tune of more than $19 million throughout of Montgomery County. At a time when revenue is tight everywhere, communities throughout southeastern Pennsylvania are joining together to push for change.
NEWS
June 25, 2016 | By Andrew Seidman, TRENTON BUREAU
TRENTON - New Jersey lawmakers on Thursday advanced a budget that closely tracks Gov. Christie's spending proposal, though the majority of Democrats offered tweaks for safety-net programs and other favorite initiatives. Separately, a bipartisan plan to more than double the state's gas tax to help fund New Jersey's empty transportation fund also moved forward. That legislative package also includes various tax cuts, including a four-year phaseout of the levy imposed on certain estates of the deceased.
NEWS
June 24, 2016
By Taylor Hosking Some concerned citizens have been raising questions, a lot of questions, about what Philadelphia will look like post-soda tax. I have a few ideas that I'm sure will quell concerns. No more free soda with your $5 halal. They'll all want an extra dollar for that soda, so there's no longer a good way to decide which halal food cart is the best. You might as well have gotten Chipotle. To save money, soda companies will deliver fewer days out of the month. The real soda addicts will figure out what days those are - and you'll know when it's empty shelf day. In order to increase sales, Coke will capitalize on the success of its names-on-the-can marketing campaign by adding millennial slang and Philly-specific words.
NEWS
June 23, 2016
A story Tuesday on the signing of the Philadelphia beverage tax into law incorrectly identified the group that retained Kline & Specter P.C. to challenge the legality of the tax. It was the American Beverage Association. A story Friday on Philadelphia Health Department restaurant inspections incorrectly described the restaurants Sannee and Wong Wong. They offer table service as well as takeout.
NEWS
June 23, 2016
ISSUE | TAXES Alter abatement tax Cheers to architecture columnist Inga Saffron for casting a light on what has become a tax boondoggle - the 10-year real estate tax abatement. ("With soda tax done, let's retool abatement," June 17). Philadelphia has one of the most liberal, untargeted abatements in the nation. As Saffron points out, historic and vintage buildings that define neighborhoods are destroyed to obtain the abatement, and the public school system is deprived of tens of millions of dollars in critical funding.
NEWS
June 23, 2016
"Nearly 250 years ago, the eyes of the world were on Philadelphia and the birth of American democracy. On Thursday, Philadelphia will again make history by becoming the second U.S. city, and the largest, to pass a tax on soft drinks. " - City Council leaders Darrell L. Clarke, Bobby Henon, Blondell Reynolds Brown, and Bill Greenlee, The Inquirer, June 14 By Mark Randall (with obvious help from Thos. Jefferson) When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dispense with the sugary brands that have consumed them, and that they have consumed, and then resume among the streets of the city that separate and unequal station to which the Laws of Economics and City Council have doomed them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the reasons they should be glad of this.
NEWS
June 23, 2016 | By Karen Langley and Angela Couloumbis, HARRISBURG BUREAU
HARRISBURG - In a shift that could ease the path to a budget deal, Gov. Wolf said Tuesday that he would no longer seek a hike in the state's personal income or sales taxes to raise new revenue. Instead, the governor told a Pittsburgh radio station, he believes he can achieve his priorities without raising the taxes that hit Pennsylvanians the hardest. "I'm not asking for a sales tax increase or a personal income tax increase," Wolf said on KDKA-AM barely a week before the July 1 budget deadline.
NEWS
June 22, 2016
ISSUE | SODA TAX Unions divided Now that City Council has approved the beverage tax, winners and losers will be tallied ("Soda tax makes history," Friday). Teamsters Local 830 lost big. As sales plummet once the tax is enacted, we will feel a corresponding loss of jobs. The beverage companies lost as sales of sugar-sweetened and diet drinks will tank. Consumers lost since they'll absorb the tax. The business community lost because it's another antibusiness levy. But the hidden cost is the damage it has done to the labor community.
NEWS
June 22, 2016 | By Claudia Vargas, Staff Writer
Before dozens of cheering supporters in City Hall, Mayor Kenney signed the sweetened beverages tax into law Monday. Now comes the tough part: enforcement. The 1.5-cent-per-ounce tax on sugar-sweetened and diet beverages is expected to raise about $91 million annually, which will go toward expanding prekindergarten in the city; creating community schools; improving parks, recreation centers, and libraries; and funding various other budget programs. Getting that money will be dependent on the Revenue Department's enforcing the tax on distributors, or, in some cases, the vendors.
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