Constitution of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania 1874/Article 9
Article IX: Taxation and Finance
Section 1: Taxes to be uniform. Exemptions.
All taxes shall be uniform, upon the same class of subjects, within the territorial limits of the authority levying the tax, and shall be levied and collected under general laws.
Section 2: Limitations of power to exempt.
All laws exempting property from taxation, other than the property above enumerated, shall be void.
Section 3: Power to tax corporations not to be surrendered.
The power to tax corporations and corporate property shall not be surrendered or suspended by any contract or grant to which the State shall be a party.
Section 4: Power to make debts.
No debt shall be created by or on behalf of the State, except to supply casual deficiencies of revenue, repel invasions, suppress insurrection, defend the State in war, or to pay existing debt; and the debt created to supply deficiencies in revenue shall never exceed, in the aggregate at any one time, one million of dollars.
Section 5: Moneys borrowed to be used for purpose specified.
All laws, authorizing the borrowing of money by and on behalf of the State, shall specify the purpose for which the money is to be used, and the money so borrowed shall be used for the purpose specified and no other.
Section 6: State credit not to be loaned, &c.
The credit of the Commonwealth shall not be pledged or loaned to any individual, company, corporation or association, nor shall the Commonwealth become a joint owner or stockholder in any company, association or corporation.
Section 7: Municipalities not to become stockholders, &c.
The General Assembly shall not authorize any county, city, borough, township or incorporated district to become a stockholder in any company, association or corporation, or to obtain or appropriate money for, or to loan its credit to, any corporation, association, institution or individual.
Section 8: Municipal debts limited.
The debt of any municipality, city, borough, township, school district or other municipality or incorporated district, except as herein provided, shall never exceed seven per centum upon the assessed value of the taxable property therein, nor shall any such municipality or district incur any new debt, or increase its indebtedness to an amount exceeding two per centum upon such assessed valuation of property, without the assent of the electors thereof at a public election, in such manner as shall be provided by law; but any city, the debt of which now exceeds seven per centum of such assessed valuation, may be authorized by law to increase the same three per centum, in the aggregate at any one time, upon such valuation.
Section 9: No assumption of municipal debts by State.
The Commonwealth shall not assume the debt, or any part thereof, of any city, county, borough or township, unless such debt shall have been contracted to enable the State to repel invasion, suppress domestic insurrection, defend in time of war, or to assist the State in the discharge of any portion of its present indebtedness.
Section 10: Re-payment of municipal debts by the State.
Any county, township, school district or other municipality incurring any indebtedness shall, at or before the time of so doing, provide for the collection of an annual tax sufficient to pay the interest and also the principle thereof within thirty years.
Section 11: Sinking fund.
To provide for the payment of the present State debt, and any additional debt contracted as aforesaid, the General Assembly shall continue and maintain the sinking fund, sufficient to pay the accruing interest on such debt, and annually to reduce the principal thereof by a sum of not less than two hundred and fifty thousand dollars; the said sinking fund shall consist of the proceeds of the sale of the public works or any part thereof, and of the income or proceeds of the sale of any stocks owned by the Commonwealth, together with other funds and resources that may be delegated by law, and shall be increased from time to time by assigning to it any part of the taxes or other revenues of the State not required for the ordinary and current expenses of government and unless in case of war, invasion or insurrection, no part of the said sinking fund shall be used or applied otherwise than in the extinguishment of the public debt.
The moneys of the State, over and above the necessary reserve, shall be used in the payment of the debt of the State either directly or through the sinking fund, and the moneys of the sinking fund shall never be invested in or loaned upon the security of anything, except the bonds of the United States or of this State.
Section 13: Reserve to the treasury.
The moneys held as necessary reserve shall be limited by law to the amount required for current expenses, and shall be secured and kept as may be provided by law. Monthly statements shall be published showing the amount of such moneys, where the same are deposited, and how secured.
Section 14: Reserve not to be converted to private use.
The making of profit out of the public moneys or making the same for any purpose not authorized by law by any officer of the State, or member or officer of the General Assembly, shall be a misdemeanor and shall be punished as may be provided by law, but part of such punishment shall be disqualification to hold office for a period of not less than five years.