Dawkins comments on Mayor Kenney’s budget address

PHILADELPHIA, March 1 – State Rep. Jason Dawkins, D-Phila., released the following statement today in response to Mayor Jim Kenney’s budget address:

“I applaud Mayor Kenney for recognizing the importance of increasing funding for our schools and continuing to prioritize investments in our emergency services.

“I am also pleased to see that the mayor has placed importance on bolstering programs that address our city’s homelessness epidemic and the raging opioid crisis. These programs are critical to maintaining the stability and health of all Philadelphians.

“However, we must find other ways to generate this funding, rather than asking citizens to directly take on this burden. We have a responsibility to provide services to the taxpayers and citizens of our city, but we have to create innovative ways to fund these obligations. It is simply not sustainable to place additional burdens on our taxpayers.

“We must work to diversify our city and state’s revenue stream. That means thinking outside of the box for long-term solutions that will benefit all who live, work and make their lives in Philadelphia.

“There are many ways we can accomplish this. As first steps, I recommend that we evaluate the feasibility of eliminating the ten year tax rebate from new construction, to give the average homeowner a break. We should also aggressively pursue those who are delinquent in their tax payments, and consider offering a tax amnesty to help raise funds for schools.

“Diversifying our revenue stream has to be our top priority, as diversity makes for resilience.  Let’s continue to move Philadelphia forward, together,” Dawkins said.