House Democrats introduce transformative budget package

Legislative Review


House Democrats introduce transformative budget package

This week, House Democrats began formally introducing the two dozen bills that make up Gov. Tom Wolf's 2015-16 state budget. Gov. Wolf's budget isn't just a spending plan, it's an investment and policy plan that would close the state's sizable budget deficit; restore harmful cuts made to school funding in the past; substantially reduce property taxes for homeowners across the state; invest in job creation and economic growth; make Pennsylvania's tax system fairer; boost the middle class; and move all of us forward together. 

House Democrats look forward to working on a bipartisan basis with the governor and with Republicans in the House and Senate as the budget process moves ahead. We are proud to join Gov. Wolf in introducing a state budget that creates Schools That Teach, Jobs That Pay and Government That Works! 

Property tax relief debate 

Good news! Work toward finally providing significant property tax relief to homeowners in Pennsylvania is moving forward. It's likely the House of Representatives will debate a property tax relief bill during session next week. 

As part of his budget package, Gov. Wolf has proposed a plan that would provide $3.8 billion in property tax relief to homeowners across the state, as well as expand rent relief to all low-income Pennsylvanians, regardless of age. The governor's plan takes into account both the property tax burden and ability to pay in determining how relief dollars are distributed in various school districts. On average, homeowners statewide would see relief of 50 percent under his plan.

Republicans have offered a stand-alone property tax relief plan that provides a similar amount of property tax reduction, but with a different distribution formula. The good news is property tax relief is a priority for a majority of both Democrats and Republicans, as well as the governor. Regardless of which specific bill is considered in the House next week, negotiations are likely to continue on finding a property tax relief plan that can pass both the House and Senate as part of the state budget and finally give homeowners the relief they need.