Voters Support Governor's Plan to Tax Natural Gas Extraction and Tobacco

LEMOYNE, Pa., April 3, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- While voters broadly favor Gov. Wolf's goal of raising school funding and reducing school property taxes, the individual components in his first budget proposal received mixed reviews, according to a recent survey from Keystone Analytics®.

A majority of voters support reducing the school property tax by increasing the sales and personal income tax and imposing a natural gas extraction tax. However, when individual components of the plan are tested, only 40 percent support raising the state income tax to 3.7 percent and voters are fairly split (47 percent support/50 percent oppose) on raising the state's sales tax rate to 6.6 percent.

Eliminating sales tax exemptions was the most strongly-opposed proposal, with 77 percent of respondents not in favor of the plan. Of the 77 percent, 63 percent of respondents strongly opposed expanding the sales tax to cover previously exempt items like newspapers, non-prescription drugs and other products and services.

Only a natural gas extraction tax and a $1 per pack increase in the tobacco tax received a majority of support from respondents, with 68 percent supporting the gas tax and 73 percent supporting the tobacco tax.

Two months into his first term as governor, fifty percent of respondents had a favorable impression of Wolf and 51 percent of respondents approved of his performance as governor so far.

Results are based on a live telephone survey of 500 likely general election voters and includes a +/-4.4 percent margin of error. Interviews were conducted on March 8-10, 2015. A full survey summary is available at

Keystone Analytics® is a Pennsylvania-based business and research firm that provides a cohesive approach to a wide range of services, including market and constituent surveys and analysis, conducting issues management, and developing and choreographing image campaigns.

CONTACT: Jennifer Shockley 717-614-4298Source:Pennsylvania Association of Realtors