By Mike DeNardo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) — Philadelphia schools are no closer to getting funding from a city-only cigarette tax, following a meeting Monday among Gov. Corbett and state legislative leaders.

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They met for about two hours, but in the end there was no agreement to bring the House back into session to vote on the $2-per-pack cigarette tax to fund Philadelphia public schools.

The school district says that without a tax in place by August 15th, schools may not open on time.

Steve Miskin, a spokesman for the House Republican leadership, notes that the tax had previously been passed in both the state House and Senate.

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“There’s a will to get it done,” he said Monday.  “The votes were there for the cigarette tax enabling legislation.  And we’ve just got to try to get there again.”

But he says the same roadblocks remain:  state Senate amendments that would increase some hotel taxes, and so-called City Revitalization Improvement Zones, which would allow tax revenues to fund some commercial real estate projects.

Gov. Corbett has said he’d consider advancing the district money to help schools open on time.


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