Tuesday, June 17, 2008
Allegheny County Executive Dan Onorato says he is ready to fight the so-called “whisky rebellion 2” with his own “property tax rebellion.” He says the state has given the county the option to either fund the county’s $30-million commitment to the Port Authority with drink and car rental taxes or fund it with property taxes. He says the only other option is to do away with the Port Authority. He says cutting spending by $30 million is not an option and he would have to increase property taxes by more than 20 percent to keep the budget balanced. Onorato says he is not even sure the proposed ballot question is legal because it does not offer offsetting spending cuts to keep the budget in balance. The home rule charter requires a balanced budget. Onotato says the only way to find other funding options for the Port Authority is to convince the state legislature to approve new taxes.