Senate Majority Leader Dominic Pileggi (R-Delaware) yesterday announced he would be introducing a "reasonable and competitive" tax on Marcellus Shale natural gas production to fund a new program to give property tax relief to senior citizens.
In a memo to his colleagues inviting them to co-sponsor the bill, Sen. Pileggi said the proposal would be a fixed rate applied to both the volume and price of natural gas and generate about $250 million per year over the next five years to fund a school property tax freeze for senior citizens.
"This proposal does not address the issue of the Marcellus Shale industry's impact on the environment and local communities," said Sen. Pilleggi. "I support Sen. Scarnati's approach in that regard, implementing a fee to cover the cost of these impacts."
To qualify for a property tax freeze, an individual 65 or older must have qualified for a homestead exemption at their current residence for no fewer than five years. If an individual is also eligible for the Propert Tax and Rent Rebate Program, they would be required to choose between the two program.
A copies of the co-sponsor memos are available online.