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Proposal Would Eliminate E-Cigarette “Floor Tax”
The 2016-17 budget included a provision that enacted a 40-percent “floor tax” on existing inventory for electronic cigarette retailers. A number of local business owners have contacted me to express serious concerns that this retroactive tax would have a catastrophic impact on their business, creating the potential for many of these retailers to close. Every lawmaker should work to enact tax policy that encourages small business growth, and this current tax – a measure I voted against – is a step in the wrong direction.
This week, I announced plans to introduce a bill that would eliminate this tax and replace it with a 5 cents per milliliter tax, which is consistent with the tax rate in other states. This approach would allow retailers and suppliers to pay a consistent and predictable tax rate going forward instead of being forced to immediately pay an unexpected tax of this size on their existing inventory.
Community Outreach Events, VFW Visits Highlight Fall Schedule
Hosting outreach events and taking part in community activities is one of the most important and rewarding parts of my job because it gives me an opportunity to better understand the challenges facing local families. Earlier this week, I had the opportunity to co-host a meet-and-greet event in Eighty Four, Somerset Township with Representative Rick Saccone. I appreciated all of those who stopped by to say hello and share their thoughts and perspectives.
Over the next several weeks, I look forward to a number of upcoming events in communities throughout the region. I will co-host a Senior Expo on September 22 at Washington Crown Center, located at 1500 West Chestnut Street in Washington, from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. On October 7, I look forward to co-hosting a senior expo at the Greene County Fairgrounds from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. In addition, Lt. Governor Mike Stack will join me on October 14 to participate in a Pathway to Pardons event from 5-7 p.m. at Courthouse Square, 100 W. Beau St., Suite 103 in Washington.
My next tele-town hall will be held on September 29 from 6-7 p.m. Community residents can learn more and register for the event at http://www.senatorbartolotta.com/tele-town-hall/. In the near future, I will also announce the rescheduled date for my concealed carry seminar, which was postponed two weeks ago.
Additionally, I recently announced a partnership with the Pittsburgh Chapter of Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States (VFW) to better serve veterans in local communities. In order to help veterans who find it difficult to travel to the VFW main office in Pittsburgh, a VFW representative will be available in my Canonsburg office the second Wednesday of every month and my Monongahela office the third Friday of every month. Veterans who are interested in scheduling an appointment can contact my Southpointe office for more information.
District Offices Offer Wealth of Services and Information
Helping people navigate the complexities of government bureaucracy is one of the most important duties of any elected official. My district offices in Canonsburg, Waynesburg and Monongahela serve as excellent resources to help connect community residents with their state government and answer questions regarding programs and services.
In addition to addressing concerns pertaining to state government programs and services, my district offices offer a number of other services, including:
Please feel free to call or stop in at one of my offices so my staff or I can help!
Mon Valley Job Fair Scheduled for October 6
Local job-seekers can learn more about employment opportunities available in local communities during the Mon Valley Job Fair in Belle Vernon on October 6. More than 40 employers will be available and looking to fill more than 200 job openings.
The job fair will be held from noon until 4 p.m. at the Willow Room, located at 800 Plaza Drive.
More information is available by contacting PA Careerlink Mon Valley at (724) 379-4750.
For more information on issues of importance to southwestern Pennsylvania, please visit my website at www.senatorbartolotta.com and connect with me on Facebook (www.facebook.com/senatorbartolotta) and Twitter (www.twitter.com/senbartolotta).
SouthPointe District Office
Greene County Office Building