Harrisburg City Council raises local services tax

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – Harrisburg City Council voted Wednesday night to raise the local services tax.

The tax, which is deducted from the paychecks of people who work in the city, is being tripled from $52 per year to $156 per year.

The increase only applies to people who make more than $24,000 per year.

The ordinance authorizing the increase does not go into effect until July 1, but workers will be required to pay retroactively to January 1.

City officials said the city will work with employers to make it easier for workers, but they are prepared to have some people challenge the retroactive payment.

At a meeting in February, Mayor Eric Papenfuse said, “The reason why we have to go for this LST increase, and we do have to go there, is because the revenue projections associated with the original Strong Plan didn’t pan out.”

City leaders say the increase could generate nearly $4 million in revenue.

Councilman Cornelius Johnson said no one is happy about raising taxes, but there aren’t many other options.

“We would love to have more options to basically get revenues to provide essential services to citizens, but the state law dictates taxing options for local governments and that’s one of the only options we have right now,” Johnson said.

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