Responding to the Governor's Budget Proposal “No matter how you slice it, Gov. Wolf proposed a massive tax increase on working Pennsylvanians and small businesses—the very same Pennsylvanians who have been unfairly targeted by overbroad and inconsistent economic shutdowns over the past year. Tax increases are not the answer to our current problems." - PA HOUSE MAJORITY LEADER KERRY BENNINGHOFF Watch the PA House GOP press conference following Wolf's address Read response from PA House Republican Leaders “What the governor proposed today was just more of the same, but it shockingly and unfairly targeted middle-class, working Pennsylvanians and small businesses job creators to pay the brunt of this massive proposed increase in spending.” - PA HOUSE APPROPRIATIONS CHAIRMAN STAN SAYLOR Wolf's Plan Calls for a Massive Tax Increase Wolf's plan calls for a 46.25% increase in the personal income tax. This would be the largest tax increase in the history of Pennsylvania. This equals a $7 billion burden on the middle class and small businesses when fully implemented. For the next fiscal year, Gov. Wolf has presented an unsustainable spending plan that increases spending by over $3 billion, an increase of 8.2 percent! The Department of Human Services alone is proposed to grow by over $1.46 billion, a 9.6% increase. Pennsylvanians Under the Wolf-Fetterman Budget Proposal.... > If you are a family of 4 earning more than $84,000 – you would be paying higher taxes. > If you are single and earning more than $49,000 – you would be paying higher taxes. > If you are a single parent, raising two kids and earning more than $69,000 – you would be paying higher taxes. > If you are married with no children earning more than $64,000 jointly – you would be paying higher taxes. > If you are a struggling small business owner, who has had to navigate confusing business shut down orders and are trying to save your business in the middle of a pandemic... Gov. Wolf has a message for you: you should be paying higher taxes! Small Businesses Would Take an Enormous Hit The vast majority - an estimated 80% - of small businesses in Pennsylvania pay the personal income tax - not corporate taxes. That means that 80% of Pennsylvania's small businesses would be subjected to Wolf's proposed tax hike of 46.25%. Many of Pennsylvania's small businesses had a crippling 2020 (especially the nearly decimated restaurant industry) ... and now Wolf wants to hit them again with a massive tax hike. This is simply not acceptable. Pennsylvania Media Outlets Dismiss Wolf's Approach Allentown Morning Call: “[T]his isn’t the time to raise income taxes, or increase the size of state government, particularly on the backs of small business owners who have been crushed by the coronavirus.” LNP/Lancaster Online: “But we’re hesitant to fully endorse the governor’s specific proposal to raise state income taxes amid a still-ongoing health crisis. An approach that potentially stymies job growth and inhibits the eventual economic recovery doesn’t seem prudent.” Altoona Mirror: “Even though the governor has tied the proposed tax increase to the laudable goal of helping education and beefing up social services, taxpayers can be excused for objecting to any tax increase during this difficult time for which COVID-19 is responsible.” Sunbury Daily Item: “Gov. Tom Wolf is picking the wrong time to propose a spending plan partially built on one of the largest income tax increases in state history…At a time when tens of thousands of Pennsylvanians are still out of work and hundreds of businesses have closed or are still struggling to keep their head above water, the timing could not be worse.” Lewistown Sentinel: “The last thing these people need is a tax increase…Throughout the pandemic, the governor has unilaterally chosen winners and losers when it comes to which businesses can stay open and which ones can’t. He has arbitrarily put restrictions on small businesses that don’t apply to the Targets and Home Depots of the world despite those establishments selling the same items. He has torpedoed the bar and restaurant business time and again, as if COVID-19 was created by a cook or server. Because of these unilateral mandates, many have gone under, never to open again. And for those who have somehow persevered, kept their businesses profitable — or at least operational — and have been able to carve out a living despite all the challenges of recent months, their ‘reward’ in the governor’s eyes is a tax hike because they can ‘afford’ it. That’s unconscionable.” "Thankfully the voters returned Republican majorities to the Pennsylvania legislature and we will once again stand up against higher taxes and fight for the hard-working taxpayers of this state." - PA HOUSE APPROPRIATIONS CHAIRMAN STAN SAYLOR Specifics on the Wolf-Fetterman Proposal General Fund Financial Statement Tracking Run The House Appropriations Committee will begin hearings to address spending in the Wolf administration's department in mid-February. View the hearing schedule here.