Pennsylvania's House of Representatives sent to the Senate a bill Wednesday that would authorize local school boards to reduce or eliminate school property taxes and shift the revenue source to new levies on residents and businesses.
The bill, clearly an effort to reassure constituents concerned about rising property taxes that lawmakers hear them, was approved without debate on a bipartisan 149-46 vote.
The measure would allow school boards to impose an "elimination tax" made up of taxes on businesses or on the income of local residents, or both. The revenue would be earmarked to reduce or eliminate property taxes. School boards would have to adopt a resolution stating their intent to create such a tax and hold at least one public hearing, but the bill would not require voter approval.
House Majority Leader Mike Turzai said it would be up to school districts to decide how much of their tax revenue they want to shift to other taxes, or whether to shift at all.
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