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File #: 150552    Version: 0 Name:
Type: Resolution Status: ADOPTED
File created: 6/4/2015 In control: CITY COUNCIL
On agenda: Final action: 6/11/2015
Title: Urging the General Assembly to modify the uniformity clause of the Pennsylvania Constitution to allow for a differential real estate tax rate between commercial and residential properties to fund the accelerated reduction of wage and business taxes to foster the growth of Philadelphia's job and tax base.
Sponsors: Councilmember Neilson, Councilmember Goode, Councilmember Quiñones Sánchez, Councilmember Greenlee, Councilmember Jones, Councilmember Tasco, Councilmember Johnson, Councilmember Bass, Councilmember Oh, Councilmember Henon, Councilmember Blackwell, Councilmember Squilla, Councilmember O'Brien, Councilmember O'Neill
Indexes: TAXES
Attachments: 1. Resolution No. 15055200.pdf, 2. Signature15055200.pdf
Title
Urging the General Assembly to modify the uniformity clause of the Pennsylvania Constitution to allow for a differential real estate tax rate between commercial and residential properties to fund the accelerated reduction of wage and business taxes to foster the growth of Philadelphia's job and tax base.

Body
WHEREAS, Philadelphia's unemployment rate increased from 6.3% in 1990 to 10% in 2013, while the national rate only rose from 5.6% to 7.4%; and

WHEREAS, Philadelphia has one of the highest poverty rates at 26% among major cities and one of the worst rates for deep poverty at 12.3%; and

WHEREAS, 37% of City residents outside of Center City need to commute to the suburbs to find work; and

WHEREAS, Philadelphia receives 68% of its tax revenue through taxes on things that can easily move - businesses and jobs; and

WHEREAS, Philadelphia taxes working City residents at a rate almost four times the rate that surrounding suburban counties tax residents who live in and work outside of Philadelphia; and

WHEREAS, Philadelphia taxes businesses and jobs at a significantly higher rate than its suburban counties, creating a 20-30% tax premium to open and operate a business in Philadelphia; and

WHEREAS, Taxing salaries and profits depresses rents, discourages business formation, weakens demand for business properties and reduces the share of real estate taxes that the City gets from commercial and industrial properties across the City, negatively impacting the City's revenue growth; and

WHEREAS, From 1996 to 2008, City Council implemented a multi-year plan of wage and business tax reduction, cutting the wage tax from 4.96% to 3.92% for City residents and making cuts in the Business Income and Receipts Tax. During this period of time, Philadelphia began to see substantial job growth and new business formation for the first time in decades. These cuts were halted in 2008 as a result of the Great Recession; and

WHEREAS, Two separate commis...

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