Harrisburg, Feb. 1, 2017 – Continuing to lead legislative efforts to eliminate property taxes, state Sen. Lisa Boscola today joined fellow Senate Democrats in calling for Gov. Tom Wolf to call a special legislative session on property tax reform.
A long-time advocate of property tax elimination, Boscola said, “My goal is to pass legislation that will eliminate the property tax and replace it with a better system to fund public education. Our homeowners deserve it and our children need it.”
During a special session, lawmakers are restricted to debating and considering bills that deal specifically with the subject of the special session. Boscola used a provision in the state’s Constitution to force former Gov. Mark Schweiker to call a special session on property taxes in 2002. She said that session sparked discussion and debate on many of the proposals and concepts that lawmakers are considering this year.
Last session, the Northampton lawmaker co-sponsored legislation (Senate Bill 76) that would have replaced the property tax with a mix of moderate income and sales tax hikes. The bill was defeated by just one vote.
“With each passing session, I see greater momentum and bipartisan support for cutting property taxes,” Boscola said. “I’m confident we have the votes to get it done this year. It’s just a question of how the legislation will be constructed.”
The Northampton County lawmaker has fought for cutting and eliminating taxes since she took office in 1994. She said property taxes hurt senior citizens on fixed incomes, burden working families and hamper the local real estate market.
“We need a school funding system that is more equitable while providing a reliable and sustainable revenue stream for our public schools,” Boscola said. “We need to get a permanent solution to the governor this year.”
Calling for interim relief while lawmakers hammer out a property tax elimination bill, Boscola has reintroduced bills that would freeze property taxes for most senior citizens (Senate Bill 102) and steer casino table games proceeds to the property tax relief fund (Senate Bill 101). She said using table games proceeds would have doubled the amount of property tax relief dollars available this year.
# # #