Rep. Tom Caltagirone wants to put brakes on Pennsylvania's taxing of traffic signals

'This is putting an extra burden on our local municipalities,' lawmaker says

READING, Pa. - Pennsylvania Rep. Tom Caltagirone is calling on the state Legislature to lift an unfair burden on local municipalities.

Caltagirone, a Berks County Democrat, has introduced legislation, H.B. 2252, that would save local municipalities from paying sales tax on traffic signals. 

"It has come to my attention that the Department of Revenue has been taxing the sale of poles and mast arms used in traffic signal construction, despite a tax code provision to the contrary," Caltagirone said. "The part that holds the actual red, yellow and green light is the only component of the construction that is currently exempt.

Caltagirone said the legislation would clear up the revenue department's inconsistent and unfair interpretations of the tax code, which allows for the tax-exempt transfer of things like traffic signals to a government entity.

"This is putting an extra burden on our local municipalities. They are paying a sales tax that we never intended them to pay," Caltagirone said. "This is a hidden tax that increases installation and maintenance costs."

The impetus behind the bill, Caltagirone said, is to protect local municipalities and their residents, who eventually pick up the tab as taxpayers.

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