New year ends Pa.'s despised capital stock and franchise tax on business


HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A much-reviled Pennsylvania business tax has been swept out by the new year.

State Revenue Department spokesman Gary Miller said Monday the capital stock and franchise tax expired Thursday as 2015 ended.

Gene Barr, president and chief executive of the Pennsylvania Chamber of Business and Industry, says the tax was unfair because it forced businesses to pay the tax on their assets even if they did not turn a profit.

Efforts to phase out the 171-year-old tax began under Gov. Tom Ridge in 2000, but its elimination was delayed several times because of the implications for state revenue.

Former Gov. Tom Corbett, a fellow Republican, implemented the final phase-out schedule and Democratic Gov. Tom Wolf let it stand as part of his business-tax reforms in this year's budget plan.