Thursday, March 19, 2009
Local Representative to Review Tax Credit Programs
The 18 tax credit programs of the Commonwealth will be in the spotlight when state officials study their impact and effectiveness this spring. State Representative David Levdansky(D) of Allegheny and Washington Counties will head the examination. Levdansky says that the state is trying to find as many ways as possible to help shorten the budget deficit. "I think it's an appropriate time, given our dire fiscal straits... to take a look at any avenues for gaining revenue, absent of raising taxes," Levdansky says. However, the representative adds that cutting the entire cost of all the tax credit programs, which currently reads at about $350 million, would hardly put a dent in the budget shortfall. "We've got... a $2.3 billion deficit. So even if you eliminated them, what are you going to gain? That's not even one-ninth," Levdansky says. The representative says much of the work will be completed by May, in time for budget negotiations, but additional studies will be performed throughout the year.