Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Allegheny County Chief Executive tonight presented his 2009 Comprehensive Fiscal Plan before Allegheny County Council. His plan once again refrains from raising property taxes and proposes a decrease in the drink and car rental tax from a 10 percent tax on poured alcoholic beverages to 7 percent. Onorato says excess revenue from the drink tax, which has already raised more than the $32 million that was needed to subsidize the Port Authority, will go towards outstanding debts on the county's roads and bridges. The overall proposed operating budget is $762.7 million and the proposed capital budget is $63.4 million. Onorato also stressed that in 2009 he will continue to follow the steps towards consolidation of the governments of Allegheny County with the City of Pittsburgh. He says the county will also pursue potential extraction of natural gas from Marcellus Shale located on the 10,000 acres of county land at the airport and in other areas. If approved, the budget will reflect the eighth consecutive year Allegheny County has not raised property taxes.