Wednesday, May 16, 2007

PA Voters: No Tax-Shift We Say

Act 1 defeat

Across Pennsylvania, voters during the Primary election which featured a referendum question said No on the question of shifting some local school property taxes to an earned income tax.

The Gov said people were "confused" about Act 1.

Right, but if it had passed, guess they were not confused. What a joke tax-shifing is, was, and always will be.

Just quit exempting businesses that give out large campaign contributions in schemes like tax incremental financing, LERTA, and Keystone Opportunity Zones. Spend taxpayers monies only on those things the state is constitutionally obligated to do. Quit adding useless program after useless program to educated students, and spend wisely...

Better yet, consolidate PA schools thereby decreasing costs of areas such as Fayette county seeing some 4 to 5 school administratings for 4-5 different school districts earning upwards of $100,000 each, and allowing to be employed in many many many cases the relatives of elected school board directors.

It's a sick system to begin with and should be privatized.

State of PA returns

Shift in school tax loses
Moving burden from property to income levy fails to persuade taxpayers that different is better
Wednesday, May 16, 2007
By Eleanor Chute, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

Western Pennsylvania residents voted a strong "no" against shifting some of their property taxes to larger local income taxes to pay for public schools, a pattern that appeared to be mirrored throughout the state...

Where at least partial results were available, they often were voting 2-1 or 3-1 against the specific proposals in their school districts.

In more than 100 school districts in seven area counties, votes were running against the measure. The counties are Allegheny, Beaver, Butler, Fayette, Greene, Washington and Westmoreland. That accounts for about one-fifth of the state's districts.

In addition, rejections were reported elsewhere by the Patriot-News in Harrisburg, the Reading Eagle, Scranton Times-Tribune, Morning Call in Allentown, Erie Times & News and York Record. One or two districts in Berks County appeared to be headed toward acceptance.

Gov. Ed Rendell had pushed hard for the referenda. His spokesman, Chuck Erdo, said, "The governor doesn't believe that the defeat of the local tax shifting question is an indication of anything other than confusion."

He added, "Many voters didn't have the information they needed to make a good choice."

The referenda were the result of a new state law -- known as Special Session Act 1 of 2006 -- which required each school board to adopt a referendum that would lower the property tax by raising an income tax. Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and Scranton were the only districts exempt under the law.

David Baldinger of Governor Mifflin School District in Berks County and administrator of the Pennsylvania Taxpayers Cyber Coalition, made up of more than 20 taxpayer groups, said he thinks the vote confirms that Act 1 is "just unacceptable to Pennsylvania taxpayers because it's not school property tax reform."

He said he talked to about 100 voters at three polling places in Berks County. He said some didn't even know the question was on the ballot, and some were confused.

Mr. Baldinger said, however, "Of people who understood what Act 1 was, almost to a person, they said they were going to vote 'no' on it."...

Tax shift: No way
By Mike Wereschagin and Mark Houser
Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Not good enough.
That's the message voters in Southwestern Pennsylvania school districts were sending to Harrisburg on Tuesday by rejecting Act 1 referendums asking them to trade higher income taxes for property tax cuts. The referendums appeared to be failing in every school district in the region by about a 70 percent to 30 percent margin.

Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and Scranton were the only school districts in the state not to offer referendums.

Richard Mason, 62, of Murrysville, was outraged that the question even made it to the ballot.

No comments: