Thursday, September 3, 2015

Council Passes Budget, Soda Tax FIzzes Out

Council just gave final approval to a $3.9 billion budget plan with a temporary 9.9 percent property tax hike, taxes on some tobacco products and an increase in the trash fee for businesses and landlords.

Council Passes Budget, Soda Tax FIzzes Out

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Council just gave final approval to a $3.9 billion budget plan with a temporary 9.9 percent property tax hike, taxes on some tobacco products and an increase in the trash fee for businesses and landlords.

Conspicuously absent from the plan was Mayor Nutter’s proposed soda tax, which Council did not act on today, despite last minute pressure from the mayor.

Council voted 11 to 5 for the property tax hike.Voting in favor were Council members Anna Verna, Marian Tasco, Darrell Clarke, Jim Kenney, Donna Reed Miller, Blondell Reynolds Brown, Bill Greenlee, Curtis Jones Jr., W. Wilson Goode Jr. Maria Quinones-Sanchez and Frank DiCicco.

Voting against were Council members Brian O'Neill, Bill Green, Jannie Blackwell, Jack Kelly and Joan Krajewski.

Nutter's original budget included a $300 per-household trash fee and a 2 cent per ounce soda tax. Council balked at both moves. Ultimately they perferred a property tax hike to the trash fee, but a majority never backed a soda tax, which Nutter reduced to 3/4 cent per ounce in recent weeks.

The budget passed today gives the mayor a surplus fund balance of $42 million, which Council says is sufficient, but Nutter argues is not enough of a cash cushion to get through the year.

 

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William Bender, a Drexel graduate who landed at the Daily News in 2007, has covered everything from South Philly mobsters to doomsday hucksters. He occasionally writes about local food trucks and always eats everything on his plate, whether it be a bloody rib eye or a corrupt politician. E-mail tips to benderw@phillynews.com
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David Gambacorta, has been a reporter with the Daily News since 2005, covering crime, police corruption and all of the other bizarre things that happen in Philadelphia. Now he’s covering the 2015 mayor’s race, because he enjoys a good circus just as much as the next guy. He’s always looking to get a cup of coffee. Send news tips and other musings on life to gambacd@phillynews.com
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