Everyone in Pennsylvania's state capital agrees that legalizing slot machines would bring much-needed revenue to the state. On just how to do that, there's an argument on every point. As one GOP lawmaker said, without some compromise, the legislature may end up rejecting the whole idea.
Democratic Gov. Ed Rendell proposed slot machine legalization in part because his predecessor agreed to transfer half a billion dollars from the state's Rainy Day Fund to avoid raising taxes in an election year. Now the fiscal cupboard is bare.
Rendell proposed legalizing slots at the state's horse tracks, which would not only invigorate the racing industry, but also avoid fights with the "not in my backyard" forces.
The estimated $800 million a year that would come to the state would be used to lower property taxes statewide. That's because Rendell's proposal to lower property taxes while raising income taxes didn't win lawmakers' backing.