HARRISBURG - Last week, Representative John Maher (R - Allegheny) directed his staff to develop a series of bills that would exempt high tunnels from real estate taxes, sales and use taxes and the Uniform Construction Code. Maher is the chairman of the House Agriculture and Rural affairs Committee.
This House action follows a bill introduced by Senator Elder Vogel, chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee. The Senate version of the legislation will be taken up by the Senate Finance Committee this Wednesday.
High tunnels (hoop houses or poly houses) are temporary agriculture structures that have not been widely taxed by counties. A recent court decision in Bedford County has caused counties to attempt to bring high tunnels into their tax base.