§ 4-900.  Powers and Duties.
   (a)   Within sixty days after its creation, the Philadelphia Tax Reform Commission shall convene its first meeting in the City Council chambers and thereafter the Commission shall meet at least monthly at such times and at such places as determined by the Commission. Members of the Advisory Committee shall be provided notice of all meetings of the Commission in the same manner as notice is provided to members of the Commission, and shall be permitted to attend all such meetings. The purpose of the Commission is to conduct a comprehensive analysis of and make recommendations regarding reforms to the tax structure and all taxes imposed in Philadelphia and the tax structure of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania which affects Philadelphia and all counties in Pennsylvania, including but not limited to the wage tax, the business privilege tax, the net profits tax, the gross receipts tax, the amusement tax, the use and occupancy tax, the real property tax, the school income tax, the real estate transfer tax, the liquor-by-the-drink tax, the parking tax, the Philadelphia sales tax, the hotel bed tax and any other taxes imposed by the City and by the School District, as well as real estate tax abatements, tax increment finance districts, Empowerment Zones, Keystone Opportunity Zones, and any other programs that use tax abatements or exemptions as economic development tools. The Commission shall also examine all laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania that authorize or limit the ability of the City to impose taxes. The Commission shall analyze each tax to determine why it is imposed, how much revenue the tax generates, the impact of the tax on businesses or residents and the Philadelphia economy, whether it may be eliminated or consolidated with another tax or otherwise simplified, and whether and to what extent the rate of the tax may be decreased in a fiscally and socially responsible manner. The Commission shall also compare and contrast the tax structure in Philadelphia to the tax structures in jurisdictions that have experienced growth in residents and businesses, using accepted models of economic analysis. The Commission's work shall be guided by the principle that Philadelphia's tax structure should enhance and improve Philadelphia's ability to compete with other jurisdictions in the region and throughout the nation in attracting new residents, businesses and jobs and retaining current residents, businesses and jobs. The Commission's work shall also be guided by the principle of tax fairness and tax equity in apportioning tax burdens. The Commission shall, subject to the availability of appropriations, appoint and fix the compensation of an executive director and such other staff as may be required for the proper conduct of its work (provided that the appointment of an executive director shall require a vote of two-thirds of all the members of the Commission), and it shall invite the participation of any staff or Board members of each of the organizations that appoint members to either the Commission or the Advisory Committee as set forth in subsections 3-805(d) and (e), as well as utilize any available resources, studies or reports of any such organization. The Commission may also, subject to the availability of appropriations, retain as consultants any other organization or individual with regionally or nationally recognized expertise in local tax policy or municipal finance. The Commission's Advisory Committee shall provide technical, economic and public policy advice to the Commission. All departments, boards, commissions and other City agencies shall cooperate fully with the Commission in the performance of its duties and responsibilities and shall provide any and all documents, data, analyses or other information related to revenues, taxes, or tax policy requested by the Commission, except documents the nondisclosure of which is legally privileged or which have been prepared for or by the Law Department for use in actions or proceedings to which the City is or may be a party, and provided that the Commission shall maintain the confidentiality of any documents, data, analyses or other related information upon the written request by any City agency that the material being provided to the Commission be treated as confidential. The Commission shall hold at least two public hearings in the Council chambers to receive testimony from the public concerning tax reform.
   (b)   On November 15, 2003, the Commission shall by a vote of two-thirds of all members of the Commission adopt a written report containing specific recommendations solely related to proposed changes to the Philadelphia tax structure in order to decrease the overall tax burden of Philadelphia residents, individuals who work in Philadelphia, and Philadelphia businesses. The Commission shall also consider recommendations made by the Advisory Committee in the development of its report. The Commission shall also make recommendations related to state-wide tax reform, including public education funding, that will enhance and improve the overall tax structures in Philadelphia and all other counties in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. The Commission shall not make any recommendations related to any expenditure reductions, municipal government cost savings, or municipal government service reductions to offset any potential revenue reductions which may result from the implementation of any recommendations set forth in the Commission's report. The Commission shall provide copies of its report to the Mayor, each member of Council and the Clerk of Council, to each of the Commission's appointing authorities, and to each member of the Advisory Committee, and the Commission shall see to it that copies are provided to all public libraries in the City and that a copy is posted on the City's official Internet site. The Commission shall also provide copies of its report to the Governor, the President Pro Tempore of the Senate, the Majority Leader of the Senate, the Minority Leader of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, the Majority Leader of the House of Representatives, and the Minority Leader of the House of Representatives. For each recommendation that requires action by the Council or the General Assembly, the report shall include a proposed ordinance or bill implementing the recommendation with a fiscal impact statement and an econometric analysis of the projected revenue change, if any, resulting from such recommendation. The Commission shall also publish and distribute with its report any minority report adopted by three or more members of the Commission.
   (c)   After issuing its report, the Commission shall thereafter be reconvened only as directed by a resolution of the Council adopted by a two-thirds vote of all the members of the Council, provided that the Commission shall not be reconvened until at least five years have elapsed since the date the Commission adopted its last report. Within sixty days after adoption of such a resolution, new members of the Commission and its Advisory Committee shall be appointed in accordance with the appointment process set forth in Section 3-805, provided that any former member of the Commission or the Advisory Committee may be reappointed as a member of the Commission or Advisory Committee.
   (d)   Nothing in this section shall be construed to prevent any member of Council or the Mayor from proposing, enacting, or approving at any time any bill relating to taxes or tax reform.
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