HARRISBURG – Legislation drafted by Rep. Lee James (R-Venango/Butler) to bridge the tax gap caused by COVID-19 was signed into law. It authorizes local governments to borrow money for two years, rather than just one year, so they can maintain operations. Tax payment deadlines have been extended for residents to alleviate some of the financial burdens caused by COVID-19, which necessitated deadline extensions for local governments. “So many Pennsylvanians have been unfairly forced out of work and are struggling to pay their bills – let alone their taxes – after experiencing significant financial loss. Local governments, like the state and federal government, are offering a reprieve in the form of an extension to help people,” James said. “But, to avoid hurting the same people local governments are trying to help, they needed an extension of their own borrowing terms to continue serving residents without interruption.” Local governments make budget expenditures throughout the year, but only receive revenue on a periodic basis throughout the budget year. Borrowing via tax anticipation notes provides a steady stream of funding with minimal additional costs. The bill was amended by the Senate to also include the 2020-21 Fiscal Code, which is the legislation that dictates how the 2020-21 state budget is spent.