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2090 Linglestown Rd.
Suite 100
Harrisburg, PA 17110
Phone:  (717) 651-0100
Fax:  (717) 651-0801

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Millersburg, PA 17061
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shelm@pahousegop.com

‘Read My Lips’: Helm pledges fight against proposed Dauphin County sales tax
4/12/2011

Saying a proposed 1 percent county sales tax would be an “economic disaster” for Dauphin County, state Rep. Sue Helm (R-Susquehanna Twp.) vowed to lead the opposition to any bill introduced in the General Assembly that would enable such a tax to be enacted. 

“I don’t know how the voters could have spoken any more clearly than they did last year that government must learn to live within its means,” Helm explained.  “There is no way the citizens of Dauphin County should be burdened with an extra sales tax.” 

The idea of a countywide 1 percent sales tax, to be levied on top of the current 6 percent state sales tax, has been floated as a way to generate revenue to help the City of Harrisburg deal with its debt crisis brought about in large part by the financially insolvent city incinerator. 

“We are not going to reach into the pockets of the hard-working families, senior citizens on fixed incomes, and the small businesses of Dauphin County to correct decades of overspending and fiscal mismanagement by one municipality,” Helm continued. “While I sympathize with the problems Harrisburg faces, the solution is not to place a job-killing tax on county taxpayers.” 

Helm noted that Gov. Tom Corbett has vowed not to raise state taxes or to implement any new taxes at the state level.  “Governor Corbett heard the message voters delivered last November and has presented a state budget that does not increase the tax burden on our citizens,” said Helm. “There is no way the Legislature should violate the spirit of that pledge by giving Dauphin County the power to enact a county sales tax.” 

Helm said any such legislation would be futile because Dauphin County Commissioners Jeff Haste and Mike Pries have already said they would not vote to implement a county sales tax if it were authorized by the General Assembly.  “I stand with the commissioners in opposing a county sales tax,” Helm said. 

“Especially at a time when our economy is struggling to recover from an economic recession already prolonged by excessive federal spending, it would be pure folly for Dauphin County to implement a sales tax,” Helm said.  “Sales taxes in Allegheny and Philadelphia counties have had the effect of driving business out of those counties to surrounding suburban counties.  There is no reason to believe the same competitive disadvantage would not be felt by Dauphin County businesses.” 

Helm said she would immediately engage in a fight against any bill introduced into the General Assembly to enable a sales tax to be implemented in Dauphin County.  “I will not only vote against it, I will make it my mission to defeat any such proposed legislation and will fight to protect the taxpayers of Dauphin County from the disastrous consequences that would result from the passage of any such bill,” she said. 

State Representative Sue Helm
104th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact:  Tim Eller
teller@pahousegop.com
717.260.6242
SueHelm.net
Facebook.com/RepHelm

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