Lawmakers On Spot To Revive Intensely Political Casino Tax

Oct 2, 2016

State lawmakers plan to vote on a new revenue formula regulating casino revenue.
Credit Cliff / Flickr

Pennsylvania lawmakers are on the spot to revive intensely political provisions for local governments and institutions to share casino revenue.

Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa says the Legislature could vote as early as October to pass a new revenue formula that's designed to pass constitutional muster.

But the Allegheny County Democrat says it'll surely take longer and become more complicated if lawmakers widen their focus to include an expansion of casino gambling or to change the distribution of the local casino revenue.

A stunning state Supreme Court decision Wednesday effectively knocked out more than $140 million in annual casino revenue for local government budgets and projects.

The high court gave lawmakers four months before the ruling takes effect. Lawmakers say many current local budgets and projects are already relying on the casino money.