Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds - The HuntingPA.com Outdoor Community
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post #1 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-05-2015, 11:34 PM Thread Starter
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Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds


State Rep. Marty Causer, R-Turtlepoint, is proposing some legislation that would benefit rural Pennsylvania by calling for tax fairness.

<span style="font-weight: bold">On Wednesday, Causer reintroduced legislation that would raise the payment in lieu of taxes (PILT) amount for state-owned lands from $3.60 an acre to $6 an acre; and would call for 20 percent of total revenue from the sale of timber, oil and natural gas on most state-owned land to be returned to local governments.</span>
“These are bills that can help the region significantly,” Causer said. “I worked on the issue back in 2006. That’s the last time we increased the PILT. It seems to me it’s time to provide an increase. It could really help the local governments a lot.”

Causer said both bills would provide significant revenue for struggling municipalities, which in this region suffer from a lack of tax dollars because of huge amounts of state-owned land.

“The Commonwealth is one of the largest land owners in the region and it is not paying its fair share,” he said. “All the rest of us have to pick up the tab.”

The Pennsylvania State Land Tax Fairness Coalition is behind the effort, Causer explained. The coalition’s members include Potter County Commissioner Paul Heimel and Cameron County Commissioner Phil Jones.

“We appreciate Representative Causer continuing his strong support for our mission,” Heimel said Wednesday night. <span style="font-weight: bold">“Several other House members, as well as state Senator Joe Scarnati, have pledged their support.</span> Our goal now is to amass enough support in both chambers of the General Assembly to pass these bills, whether independently or as part of a broader tax reform package.”

Heimel explained this issue isn’t one that pits rural Pennsylvania against the larger urban areas of the state, like Philadelphia and Pittsburgh.

“This is more a matter of basic fairness,” Heimel said. “We have found that when lawmakers from counties where there is not much tax-exempt state-owned land see our maps demonstrating the way our tax base is gutted, they are more supportive of our plight.”

<span style="font-weight: bold">The measures are being supported by the County Commissioners Association of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania State Association of Township Supervisors and the Pennsylvania School Boards Association.</span>

“These are voices that should speak loudly in Harrisburg, since they represent every county, township and school district in the state,” Heimel said. “So, we have a very strong case to make in terms of fairness and in terms of this being the will of the people. But we know that this is going to be an uphill battle, so we’re going to redouble our efforts with more one-on-one contacts with lawmakers, more maps and other exhibits, and more attention paid to making our coalition even stronger with additional partners.”

Describing what the impact of just one bill could be, Causer said the increase in PILT would be an additional $9 million annually paid into municipal coffers.

<span style="font-weight: bold">The PILT funds now come from several sources, he explained. The Pennsylvania Department of Conservation and Natural Resources and the state Game Commission each pay $1.20 an acre from the agencies budgets, while the remaining $2.40 per acre comes from gaming revenue.

Where the increase would come from would be subject to negotiation, he said. “Certainly oil and gas revenue would be one potential source.”</span>

He added, “The agencies certainly would not support (an increase in PILT). But the county governments are struggling and the state agencies are continuing to buy up more land. The agencies would moan and groan about paying more, but at the same time, they are the ones buying up the land.

<span style="font-weight: bold">“Cry me a river,” he said with a laugh. “I don’t have much sympathy for the agencies.</span> This is a fairness issue. If the state continues to buy up land, they can continue to pay PILT to help struggling municipalities.

“I don’t think we need any more government land,” Causer added. “If we’re going to have it, the government should pay a fair share to bring some relief to our local taxpayers.”

The second measure would re-route some funds the state already collects back to the municipalities from where resources are harvested.

“The two bills work together,” Causer said.

<span style="font-weight: bold">The second, he explained, “would provide for 20 percent of the royalties and income that come off the state land to be sent back to local municipalities. Now, all timber revenue, oil and gas revenue and royalties all go to the state government.

“Under this legislation, 20 percent would be distributed back to local governments,” Causer said.</span>


The legislator admitted that his bills will likely be modified as they move forward in consideration, but said, “I thought this was a reasonable starting point.”

More about the tax fairness coalition’s fight can be found on its website, pastatelandtaxfairness.com.



http://www.bradfordera.com/news/arti...d8906a6f3.html

Is your position a short term gain - or a long term loss? Separate the issues.
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post #2 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-05-2015, 11:41 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds

Actually the cost to the GC would be hugely more.

Some 30 million or so more. The diversion of any gas, timber, coal revenue would cause the stop to all pitman roberton Funding tot he GC. That is the money that most habitat work, and other improvements comes from. That is the money that is a 1:3 match. Forinstance, the GC wants to upgrade a road or bridge on the GL - they put up 25% and file for a grant out of their allotment of allocated PR funds.

In just the last year, the Deer Predator study is being paid in this manner.

The GC / PSU Deer Forest study as well.


The last time this was an issue, it was 2006 under SB 642. The compromise was made to take the revenue from the gaming fund even before that legislation was final. The reason was, this would have bankrupted the GC. A state agency can not be bankrupt - they are merged. The most likely agency to merge with - DCNR and total political control by the legislature.


Causer is consistent in one thing - his hatred of the GC and the things they do.

Is your position a short term gain - or a long term loss? Separate the issues.
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post #3 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 12:50 AM
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Re: Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds

He is definately out to kill the PGC. He wants an end to the PGC & the gamelands as we know it. This to me is a personal vendetta. He or some one in his family must have been caught in a gamelaw violation & find. Think about this he wanted the PGC & PF&BC merged, since that did not happen he is trying to find another way to get rid of the Game Commission. Hunters have to stick together an let our state reps.& Senators know we are against it. The loss of pittman-robertson funds will deal a serious blow to wildlife management & hunting in this state. Lets face it our state lands benifit all Pennsylvanians. This man wants to kill the PGC period.
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post #4 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 01:13 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds

Just to be clear.

This transcends the deer issue.

If this happens, within a few years the GC will be under the DCNR - and all that would bring with it.

Second, for those that think this is a good idea and that they can control and get the legislator to do their bidding... unless you have the cash to keep them herded up in your favor, your the first one they turn on. A politicians first love is themselves followed by money and power... and you can flip that in some situations.

Is your position a short term gain - or a long term loss? Separate the issues.
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post #5 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 09:35 AM
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Re: Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds

Some may recall his recent tenure as chairman of the House Game and Fisheries Committee? Pretty much little more than a continuous brow beating of both agencies, but especially Game.

One of the most clueless individuals I have ever encountered on agency issues, wildlife management in general and deer in particular.

I believe he is now chair of the AG and rural affairs Comm. or whatever it is called? This foray into state funds for local benefit is nothing new. He and other officials in the northern tier counties, have been at it for some time.

Judging by public comments on some local news blogs up there, it is becoming very popular with the voters in those areas. I raised the issue of P-R funding, zero need for local services on SF and SGL lands and some other things last week on one of the blogs. My comments never made it "to print".

Some folks' learnin' curves just look like circles...3A Camp/also hunt 4B
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post #6 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 09:44 AM
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Re: Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds

Marty, Marty, Marty.....The guy is PGC hater and has referred to them as land barons.

I did call him out when he was on the PCN call in program about his war against the PGC. He said it was his job a legislator.

I support all hunters, regardless of weapon or technique!
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post #7 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 03:55 PM
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Re: Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds

I see nothing wrong with all land owners paying there fair share of property taxes , and that includes the PGC . Why should they pay less than any other large land owner.

Save a wolf , take one to the taxidermist
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post #8 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 05:11 PM
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Re: Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds

yep, this is the same combo that was circulated last year. DCNR could pay for thier PILT from the timber revenue\gas revenue that is currently going to the general fund. The PGC would be in a world of hurt. Causer will probably now recirculate the proposal of combining game\fish commissions and the amazing savings per year will be enough to pay the additional PILT (yeah right)
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post #9 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 08:07 PM
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Re: Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds

Because the gamslands & forestlands benefit every Pennsylvanian & what services do the counties provide to these lands none. How much is going to be enough, How many camps pay realestae taxes & recieve no benifits where is that money going. All this is is an attack on the PGC an independently funded agency created by the legislature to manage our birds an mamals an authorized to buy land for hunting & wildlife to be enjoyed by all people of Pa.
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post #10 of 117 (permalink) Old 02-06-2015, 10:40 PM
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Re: Direct Attack on GC Solvency -Loss of All PR Funds

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike M.
Because the gamslands & forestlands benefit every Pennsylvanian & what services do the counties provide to these lands none. How much is going to be enough, How many camps pay realestae taxes & recieve no benifits where is that money going. All this is is an attack on the PGC an independently funded agency created by the legislature to manage our birds an mamals an authorized to buy land for hunting & wildlife to be enjoyed by all people of Pa.
Your words,,,,,,,How many camps pay real estate taxs and recieve no benefits

My point exactly many full and part time residents pay there full tax bill yet recieve no benefits , and the pgc should do the same.

Save a wolf , take one to the taxidermist
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