The $2B question has no answer in sprawling budget deal

Written by The Associated Press | Nov 16, 2015 2:59 AM

(Harrisburg) -- The $2 billion question in Harrisburg is which Pennsylvania homeowners will get the biggest benefit from a higher state sales tax.

Governor Tom Wolf and Republican legislative leaders must somehow agree on an answer if the package is to get across the finish line with a sprawling budget deal that's five months overdue. 

The sales tax increase is supposed to underwrite a rebate on school property taxes. 

The tax trade-off is part of Wolf's overall goal to narrow disparities between wealthier and poorer school districts. 

But for Democrats, raising the sales tax is a red flag that the tax code is becoming more regressive. 

Many conservatives already are signaling that they will oppose it, and suburban Republican moderates worry that their districts will get shortchanged

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