Pa. budget deal ends 80-day impasse

September 18, 2009 9:16:07 PM PDT
Gov. Ed Rendell and legislative leaders are praising a budget deal that would end Pennsylvania's distinction as the last state still fighting over its annual spending plan. They announced late Friday a nearly $28 billion plan that would raise business and cigarette taxes and would draw more than $1 billion from the state's rainy day fund and an account that helps doctors pay malpractice premiums.

The deal would legalize table games at casinos and would extend the state's sales tax to concert and theater tickets.

The breakthrough follows months of negotiations over whether to fill a multibillion-dollar budget deficit through cuts, higher taxes or a combination of the two.

Pennsylvania's been without a completed budget since its fiscal year began July 1.

The plan still requires legislative approval.

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