State Rep. John Taylor (R-Philadelphia) wants a state agency to be forced to release documents that could prevent the failure of two key commonwealth tax credit programs.
In a letter to Gov. Tom Wolf that was co-written by Sen. Vincent Hughes (D-Philadelphia), Taylor asked that the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) be required to make public letters that would let statewide enterprises donate funds to prevent the Educational Improvement Tax Credit (EITC) and the Opportunity Scholarship Tax Credit (OSTC) programs from collapsing.
The DCED had previously decided not to release the tax credit approval letters — a necessary prerequisite for corporations whose contributions fund the program — until the current budget impasse is resolved. Taylor argued that the agency’s action would irreparably harm children and families.
“There’s no question that the need for these investments is real,” Taylor said. “Without the timely issuance of the approval letters, these contributions almost certainly will be lost.”
The EITC/OSIC program issues tax credits to organizations donating funds to K-12 students, educational public school and pre-school early learning programs. Scholarship donations must be submitted before Dec. 31 to qualify for the tax credit.
“From its inception, the EITC/OSTC program has enjoyed broad bipartisan support in the legislature, and from Democratic and Republican governors alike,” Taylor said. “On both sides of the aisle, we are concerned that the failure to timely issue the approval letters will permanently damage this important program for children and families. That would be unfortunate and, we believe, unnecessary.”
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