Poll: City On the “Wrong Track”

A new Pew poll shows Philadelphians are unhappy with the many proposed tax hikes to cover the city’s $1.4 billion budget gap over the next five years and that the city is on the “wrong track.” 

Mayor Michael Nutter proposed to raise property tax over the next two years, which is a plan rejected by 86 percent of the 800 city residents surveyed.

Residents also disfavor the “penny with a purpose” plan (53 percent against) to raise sales tax by one percentage point for three years.

Sixty eight percent oppose a hike in the city wage tax, as well, according to the survey commissioned by The Pew Charitable TrustsPhiladelphia Research Initiative.

If it were up to residents, 48 percent would choose fewer services for the same taxes, rather than increasing taxes and losing city services, which is Mayor Nutter’s plan. 

Fewer services means layoffs for city workers.  The poll showed 62 percent of residents were not in favor of cutting the city workforce.

“The poll indicates that people don’t want to make the tough choices—they want their leaders to make the choices for them,” Larry Eichel, project director of the Philadelphia Research Initiative said.

But, the good news for Mayor Nutter is although his popularity has declined since a poll taken in January, he still received favorable ratings from 59 percent of respondents.

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