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Pa. lawmakers get four more months to fix local slots tax

The Pennsylvania Supreme Court on Friday gave lawmakers an additional four months — until May 26 — to fix a tax on casinos' slots revenue that was struck down as unconstitutional in September.

In a case brought by Mt. Airy Casino Resort in the Poconos, the court declared the so-called local share assessment unconstitutional because it imposed different effective tax rates on casinos depending on their size. The court stayed the ruling until Jan. 26 to give lawmakers time to come up with a fix.

A group of state senators asked for more time in a petition filed Jan. 12.

The petition for the extended stay was granted with one dissent, by Justice David N. Wecht, who said the General Assembly had plenty of time change the unconstitutional tax, but "lacked the political will to do so."

"A stay that countenances continued collection of an unconstitutional tax is a tool that the Court should wield with extreme caution and humility," Wecht wrote.