House GOP regroups around no-new-tax package to plug deficit - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

House GOP regroups around no-new-tax package to plug deficit

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By MARC LEVY
Associated Press

HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - Up against a deadline for Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf to freeze spending, Republicans who control Pennsylvania's House of Representatives are developing what they say is a no-new-taxes revenue package to plug state government's $2.2 billion budget gap.

House Republicans said they expected a vote Wednesday afternoon. The budget stalemate is in its third month.

Few details were immediately public, but rank-and-file Republicans say the package relies heavily on borrowing $1 billion against future revenues from Pennsylvania's share of a 1998 multistate settlement with tobacco companies.

It also would transfer hundreds of millions of dollars from off-budget programs and count on $225 million in fees by allowing licensed casinos to open new mini-casinos and launch online gambling portals.

With the state's bank account scraping bottom, Wolf warns that he'll be unable to pay bills on time starting Friday.

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