In 2013: It was reintroduced, this time with 26 members in bipartisan support (Republican and Democrat).
In 2015: It was reintroduced (SUT at 7% with an expanded tax base, PIT at 4.34%) , with nearly 23 of the senate co-sponsoring. It was brought for vote in November 2015. It was tied 24-24, with the Lt. Gov breaking the tie with a 'nay' vote. This is the closest this bill would have gotten to passage.
In 2017: It was reintroduced with 20 co-sponsors. The PIT rate was increased to 4.95% to accommodate property tax growth. No vote.
In 2019: The bill was re-introduced with only 7 co-sponsors. No vote.
The bill was not re-introduced in 2021. The bill would need revised to 8% SUT with an expanded tax base and 4.95% PIT for the numbers to have worked.
The primary complaints of SB76/HB76 were:
1) Tax burden falls disproportionately on the young and working class (no retirement tax), with the PA IFO predicting an out-migration of 222,000 working-class residents, and an in-migration of 673,000 retirees over 10 years.
2) Fear of money flowing 'through Harrisburg'. Lack of local control worried PA residents and legislators.
3) Most schools carried debt payments via property taxes, and these would continue for some time under SB/HB76 4) Property tax elimination gets passed on to property owners, but there was no guarantee that it would reduce rent.
This legislation (as of Q4 2021) has not been introduced, but has been circulated in 'DRAFT' form for review as "House Bill 13"
- It updates the tax numbers (8% Sales, 4.92% Income, and expanded Sales/Income) to accomodate 2021+ numbers
- The +2% sales tax (6 to 8%) and +1.85% income tax are LOCAL taxes, meaning they doesn't flow through Harrisburg
- The In/Out-migration issues are solved by taxing (NON-Social Security or equivalent) retirement income. This way, the tax falls evenly on retirees and working class. (Retirees collectively save 75%.)
- Debt payments: This bill improved on SB76 by accounting for existing debt.
What Lessons can we learn?
We can piece together 'what worked' and 'what failed' in previous bills.