Government news & views with dan debone
One of the recent additions to the Westmoreland County Chamber of Commerce is daily legislative updates on a local, state and federal level. Our new benefit to members will include key articles, new bills or pending legislation and much more to ensure you and your organization are made aware of various items that could help and unfortunately at times create concern. As a former government relations specialist who spent most of his career in front of the legislature at various levels, which included monitoring and interpretation of legislation, as well as years of advocacy, I'm excited to offer this benefit and experience to our members. Most importantly, I want to ensure your best interests, your voices and concerns are being heard throughout a local, state & federal level. Also, I encourage you to reach out to me with your concerns, questions and more as we increase our level of legislative advocacy through the Westmoreland County Chamber of Commerce. Please feel free to call me at 724-834-2900 or email me at email@example.com.
Government Affairs & General Updates 5/24/2022
1. A Reduction in the Corporate Net Income Tax May be at Hand - When lawmakers return on May 24th there are several key fiscal decisions to be made. Of most interest to MBA members is the reduction of the 9.99% corporate net income tax (CNIT), the second highest in the nation. There is bi-partisan support, a rarity. The questions to address during budget negotiations are how much to cut and when. Adapted from Key fiscal decisions await Pa. lawmakers after recess,” Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Gillian McGoldrick,5/1/22 House Bill 1960 would reduce the CNIT rate from 9.9 % to 8.99% on 1/1/23 and would cut the rate by .5 percent annually for two years if the General Fund budget meets surplus targets above $500 million. The Compete PA coalition supports Senate Bill 771 which reduces the CNI tax rate faster to 6.99% by 2024.
2. Small Business Legislation - House Bill 385 passed out of the House and would encourage small business growth. The bill allows the tax deferral of like-kind exchanges and also excludes paycheck protection program loans and stimulus checks from the personal income tax. The bill, now in the Senate, is expected to be part of the June budget negotiations.
3. Automated Vehicles - House Bill 2398 - Highly Automated Vehicles (HAVs) - is on the fast track according to sources. The bill provides for the testing and deployment of HAVs and for the operations of the vehicles with or without a driver on board. Numerous elements will be addressed including vehicle operation, transportation network, licensing, registration, insurance, regulations, and all with safety at the forefront. HB 2398 is in the House Transportation Committee. MBA will support and follow for the duration. Over the long-term, the bill addresses the shortage of CDL drivers, important to many MBA members.
4 Legalization of Recreational Marijuana - Some think it is not a matter of “If,” it’s a matter of “When.” “With neighboring states including Maryland, New York and New Jersey establishing their own private adult-use cannabis markets, Pennsylvania may be feeling peer pressure to act. The General Assembly has taken steps this year to learn more about recreational cannabis legalization through a series of public hearings in Senate committees, and a pair of bipartisan proposals suggest the commonwealth may be closer to legalization than ever before.”
...“The pressure is on Pa. as neighboring states legalize recreational cannabis,” PA Capital Star, Harrison Cann, 5/9/22