‘A ne­ces­sity’

Centre Daily Times (Sunday) - - Opinion -

My com­pli­ments to CDT re­porters Sarah Rafacz and Lau­ren Muth­ler for their se­ries of re­ports on al­co­hol­re­lated crimes in the State Col­lege area and the need for broader tax­ing au­thor­ity to pay for the nec­es­sary po­lice, emer­gency, and other ser­vices. Bill Ma­hon’s OpEd on this sub­ject is also praise­wor­thy.

As stated in Mr. Ma­hon’s OpEd, au­thor­ity to tax al­co­hol both for retail sales and for poured liquor is a ne­ces­sity for State Col­lege Bor­ough and should be given to all Cen­tre Re­gion mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties. It is by far the fairest tax dis­cussed in the CDT ar­ti­cles and cer­tainly fairer than what we are forced to do now; fund th­ese ser­vices us­ing prop­erty taxes and earned in­come taxes.

Sev­eral cit­i­zens have rec­om­mended an al­co­hol tax to me while I was on Bor­ough Coun­cil. Many Bor­ough of­fi­cials -- in­clud­ing Mayor Hahn and for­mer Mayor Gore­ham, Bor­ough Man­ager Tom Foun­taine, the last three Coun­cil Pres­i­dents, my­self, and sev­eral other Coun­cil mem­bers --have spo­ken to state leg­is­la­tors about grant­ing State Col­lege broader tax­ing au­thor­ity. Un­for­tu­nately, even though Philadel­phia and Al­legheny County al­ready levy al­co­hol taxes, the Com­mon­wealth leg­is­la­ture is un­likely to grant us any broader tax­ing au­thor­ity.

As a com­mu­nity, we know that an al­co­hol tax would al­low for State Col­lege-area mu­nic­i­pal­i­ties to pro­vide re­sources nec­es­sary to deal with al­co­hol-re­lated in­ci­dents in this area and could yield prop­erty tax re­lief; Har­ris­burg needs to give us the au­thor­ity to levy one. - Jesse L. Bar­low, State Col­lege, PA

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