Senate of Pennsylvania
SENATOR ROBERT J. MELLOW SENATOR VINCE FUMO
PHONE: (717) 787-5166 PHONE: (717) 787-5662
HARRISBURG, January 27, 2004 – Senate Democratic Leader Robert J. Mellow and Democratic Appropriations Chairman Vince Fumo have issued the following joint statement in response to Governor Rendell’s announcement on gambling and tax reform:
"We are committed to working with the governor to provide property tax relief throughout the state and wage tax relief in Philadelphia, using the revenue provided by slots. That was our original goal when we became deeply involved in this issue in the spring of 2003. Since then, we have invested a great deal of time and resources, including conducting the only statewide market analysis, to develop a slots bill that protects the public interest while meeting the governor's objective of raising $1 billion for tax cuts.
"As a result, we drafted legislation that currently has substantial support in both chambers. We are committed to resolving differences that exist regarding various provisions of the slots legislation. We believe there are certain provisions of the bill that are extremely important to the public interest, including license fees and strict regulatory controls. We also believe it would be unwise for the commonwealth to ignore the threat of future competition from unregulated and untaxed Indian gaming.