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Corbett says he’s ‘disappointed’ cigarette tax vote postponed

This article was originally published in The Notebook. In August 2020, The Notebook became Chalkbeat Philadelphia.

Gov. Corbett said he disagreed with House Republican leaders’ decision to call off a planned vote on authorizing Philadelphia to raise a cigarette tax to help fund its schools.

"Hopefully we’ll find out what the reason was," said Corbett at an unrelated event in York County on Friday. Less than 24 hours before, House lawmakers had been notified they would not be called back to Harrisburg next week, as previously planned, to vote on the cigarette tax.

Philadelphia’s Mayor Nutter had lobbied tirelessly for the bill, saying it was necessary to close a $93 million budget gap and stave off layoffs, larger class sizes, and a late start to the school year.

"We need to make sure that the School District of Philadelphia understands that this opportunity that’s been discussed for — what, a year and a half? — comes to fruition," Corbett said.

He added that "it’s not clear" whether House leaders scuttled next week’s session days because of disagreement in their ranks or because lawmakers didn’t want to interrupt their summer vacations.

Read the rest of this story at NewsWorks

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